Habitat Management

Invasive Plants

Species Mapping & Management Techniques Research

The Westfield River Wild and Scenic Committee has been conducting research on some of the more common and problematic invasive plant species in the upper Westfield River watershed. These include:

The working group is tracking the spread of and assessing the effectiveness of a range of management strategies for different invasive plants in a scientific manner.

This includes:

  • Surveying and mapping invasive plant patches along designated Wild and Scenic river segments.
  • Initiating public work days that engage community members in pulling invasives from a site. These larger scale efforts are especially effective along smaller tributary streams.
  • Working with willing landowners on  site-specific management plans.
  • Establishing research plots where summer interns test different treatment methods are used on knotweed and their efficacy carefully monitored.

Stream Habitat

Assessing fish populations in the Westfield River and tributaries

The Wild & Scenic Westfield River Committee supports projects which improve and protect high-quality coldwater habitat, especially for native reproducing populations of Eastern Brook Trout.  The Committee also participates in regional collaborations to protect and restore habitat, including serving as an active member of the Westfield River Invasive Species Partnership (WISP).

Kinne Brook Stream Barrier Removal Project

Kinne Brook, a designated high quality coldwater tributary within the Middle Branch of the Westfield River, currently has three barriers: two 4-foot culverts on an unpaved town road and a small river dam approximately 20 feet wide and 6 feet high.  Eastern brook trout presently exist across a wide range of the Middle Branch. However, recent survey results have identified declining native fish populations on Kinne Brook tributaries.

The Committee provided a portion of the funds for Design, Engineering and Construction. In addition, the Committee provided technical assistance and support for permit applications, field surveys and pre-restoration monitoring.

Kinnebrook Restoration Initiative Video

The Kinne Brook Restoration Project will remove 3 fish passage barriers to restore habitat connectivity to over 10 miles of upstream spawning and rearing habitat for Eastern Brook Trout (EBT), slimy sculpin and other related coldwater fish species. Here this first barrier -- a small dam -- comes down!