On June 4, Bridgewater Township invites the public to a feedback session on next steps to improve and protect Rice Creek (Spring Brook). The session will take place from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, 500 Railway Street South, Dundas.
Rice Creek is the only trout stream in Rice County, but its health is threatened. The session will give you an opportunity to learn about the stream and provide input on plans to improve it. To spark your ideas, researchers will share findings from a two-year study of local brook trout, their habits and habitat.
How healthy is the trout population? Does their habitat need improvement? Where and when are pollutant levels highest? What is the source of cold water that trout prefer? What actions should we take and in what order? We will discuss these questions and more.
The Rice Creek Assessment Project is sponsored by Bridgewater Township, Cannon River Watershed Partnership, Saint Olaf College, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and Trout Unlimited. The project received a Clean Water Partnership grant from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. The Rice Creek Concerned Citizens Group, Rice County, and other groups and volunteers are participating.
Dr. Michael Osterholm, epidemiologist and trout-fishing enthusiast, will share the story of rehabilitating three trout streams on his Prairie Song Farm in Iowa.
Until 2002 the streams were degraded by severe bank erosion and a lack of in-stream cover. Since that time, an extensive effort was made to enhance stream habitat, increase fish and prey populations, and improve spawning sites. This presentation will provide a comprehensive overview of issues surrounding coldwater stream improvement. Lessons learned will inform restoration efforts on our local trout stream, Rice Creek.
Dr Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.
Spring Brook (also known as Rice Creek) “is the only trout stream in Rice County, and is an uncommon resource type in southern Minnesota” according to the Northfield Natural Resource Inventory (NRI) commissioned by the City of Northfield in 2005.
Kathleen Doran-Norton, member of the Bridgewater Township Board of Supervisors, forwarded the email below and photo (above) to me yesterday. She didn’t say so but I’m guessing she’s got Thursday’s Business and Industrial Park planning open house in mind since Spring Brook/Rice Creek flows through the southern edge of the “south site” on West Armstrong Rd. in Bridgewater Township. Kathleen wrote:
Continue reading A Spring Brook treasure photographed; good timing