Is Water Quality in the Neuse River Basin Protected After Timber Harvests?


Neuse_River_KenThompson.jpgOn lands managed for timber, leaving a forested buffer between timber harvest areas and waterways is one example of a Best Management Practice (BMP) that can protect water quality, but, until recently, the effectiveness of BMP strategies had not been evaluated in the North Carolina Piedmont region. Eastern Threat Center biological scientist Johnny Boggs led a study, published in the Journal of Forestry, that put BMPs in the Piedmont to the test. He and colleagues measured sediments and nutrients in small streams within paired watersheds draining into the Piedmont's Neuse River, which runs through many timber-producing forests. The researchers found increased levels of sediments and nutrients immediately after harvests had taken place, but concluded that BMPs do indeed protect the Neuse River's water quality because these changes were not severe enough to harm aquatic ecosystems. Read more in CompassLive...

Pictured: The Neuse River begins in North Carolina's Piedmont Region and flows for 275 miles to the Atlantic Ocean. Photo by Ken Thompson, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.


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