Brook Trout Habitat Restoration at Spring River

Funding Round/Year: 
Project Sponsor: 
The Nature Conservancy
MNRCP Region: 
Downeast Maine
Townships T9 SD and T16 MD
Total Cost of Project: 
MNRCP Award: 
Project Type: 
New open-bottom box culvert that replaced an undersized culvert, photo by TNC
Project Description: 
This project restored and enhanced approximately 10 acres of wetlands and 30,000 linear feet of stream through multiple restoration and enhancement activities within the Nature Conservancy's 13,800-acre Spring River Narraguagus Forest. The Spring River Narraguagus Forest was obtained by the Nature Conservancy in 2021 through a partnership with The Conservation Fund. The property had a network of logging roads, many of which impacted wetlands and streams within the Narraguagus Lake, Spring River and Narraguagus River watersheds. The Narraguagus River system is an aquatic conservation priority with high value habitat for brook trout, Atlantic salmon, river herring, eel and other sea-run fish. Construction on this project was completed in 2022 and included: 1) removal of 6,200 square feet (SF) of road surface from scrub-shrub wetland as part of road retirement work and the retirement of 2.35 miles of road; 2) removal of 6,000 SF of road surface and removal of five poorly placed culverts from forested wetland as part of road retirement work; 3) removal of 16,000 SF of road through a forested wetland; 4) planting of vegetation plugs sourced from adjacent wetlands in the areas exposed by road removal; 5) removal of two bridges to restore 2,000 SF of forested wetland as part of road retirement work; and 6) upgrade of one undersized stream culvert to a open-bottom, box culvert to restore 200 SF of forested wetland and enhance 1.4 stream miles and 3.2 acres of emergent wetland upstream of the culvert.