Conservation Project Failures Generate a New, Science-Based Approach
The Monroe County Land Conservation Department started experiencing an increase in conservation project failures as storm events caused significant flood damage to streambanks, stream crossings, and dam structures throughout this southern Wisconsin county.
“These frequent flooding events are impacting the effectiveness of conservation practices currently being used in streambank restoration projects,” said Monroe County Land Conservation Director, Bob Micheel. “Our conservation failures are jeopardizing soil health and water quality by increasing soil erosion and sediment delivery to the County’s 200+ miles of trout streams.”
With funding from Fishers & Farmers, Monroe County LCD was able to install two monitoring stations in the Little La Crosse River watershed AND restore 3,195 linear feet of deteriorating streambank. The Monroe County Climate Change Task Force then leveraged funding from other grant programs to build a robust flood monitoring system network throughout southern Monroe County. Over the course of this project, 27 flood monitoring stations were purchased and installed in the Little La Crosse, Upper Kickapoo and Coon Creek watersheds. This was an opportunity to build technical capacity and strong regional partnerships.
“We knew we had to develop a county wide, systematic approach to conservation,” said Bob. “Funding from Fishers & Farmers helped us kick start this effort and led to leveraged funding from other grant programs to complete the monitoring system.”