Week #5 for the Chéticamp River Salmon Association was very exciting, because we had new tools to work with that allowed us to further our restoration work as well as ecological monitoring along Aucoin Brook.
The week was started off by heading out to a spot along Aucoin Brook, with help from chainsaw operator Albert Deveau, where bank logs were placed last week. Here, we began to build a long log wall along a portion of the bank where there is extensive damage from erosion. The log wall will help stabilize the bank, and help to prevent further damage by erosion.
On Tuesday, we were very excited to try out a tool that Adopt-a-Stream was lending us for the week called a sandwand. The sandwand is a piece of equipment that allows you to clean up unwanted sand and silt from a river or stream when there is large abundances of it. Will, from Adopt-a-Stream came out to show us how to hook everything up, as well as how to use the sandwand. We used the sandwand on Wednesday and Thursday as well, completing 3 large sites along Aucoin Brook. Now, these sites have a clean rocky bottom, which is exactly where fish like salmon seek out to spawn in.
On Wednesday and Thursday we also did some ecological monitoring along Aucoin Brook, using a probe that measures things such as water pH, salinity, dissolved oxygen, water temperature, etc. We also record things such as water depth, bank width, blockages, vegetative cover, varying substrates, and presence of fish, among other things! We plan on recording this information in different sections in over 10 areas along Aucoin's Brook. Recording information like this is important because it allows us to see the changes that occur each year, and lets us know how we could possibly improve any areas that may need structures put in, or blockages taken out.
Friday consisted of continuing work on the log bank wall that was started on Monday. Overall, it was a great week, and we got a lot accomplished!