Advertisement

Aquatic Sciences

, Volume 78, Issue 3, pp 605–614 | Cite as

Vegetation of riprapped revetments along the freshwater tidal Hudson River, New York

  • David L. Strayer
  • Erik Kiviat
  • Stuart E. G. Findlay
  • Nancy Slowik
Research Article

Abstract

Riprapped revetments are a common shore defense along lakes, rivers, estuaries, and the ocean, but little is known about the ecology of these structures. We studied the amount and composition of vascular vegetation on riprapped revetments along the freshwater tidal Hudson River, New York. Cover, species richness, and species composition of vegetation varied greatly across the 21 study sites, from nearly barren sites to densely vegetated sites. The flora was split about equally between native and nonnative species, and vines were especially well represented. Vegetation cover and composition were correlated with the age, slope, particle size, and roughness of revetments, as well as site exposure and local management practices. We suggest that the ecological functions provided by revetment vegetation vary enormously from site to site along the Hudson, and could be enhanced by deliberate design and management.

Keywords

Cover Estuary Management Nonnative Revetment Riparian Riprap Species richness Vegetation 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We thank the National Estuarine Research Reserve System Science Collaborative for funding, John DeBella, Angela Cross, Mark Leopold, Laura Lukas, Heather Malcom, Erica Morgan, Charlotte Nash, Rich Pendleton, Gretchen Stevens, and Jeff Walker for technical help and advice, and three reviewers and the editor for helpful suggestions. Marjorie Groten, Tom Lynch, and Sacha Spector provided useful information about study sites. This paper is a contribution to the program of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies and a Bard College Field Station—Hudsonia contribution.

Supplementary material

27_2015_445_MOESM1_ESM.docx (29 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 29 kb)

References

  1. Airoldi L, Beck MW (2007) Loss, status and trends for coastal marine habitats of Europe. Oceanogr Mar Biol Annu Rev 45:345–405Google Scholar
  2. Bariteau L, Bouchard D, Gagnon G, Levasseur M, Lapointe S, Bérubé M (2013) A riverbank erosion control method with environmental value. Ecol Eng 58:384–392CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Browne MA, Chapman MG (2011) Ecologically informed engineering reduces loss of intertidal biodiversity on artificial shorelines. Environ Sci Technol 45:8204–8207CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Browne MA, Chapman MG (2014) Mitigating against the loss of species by adding artificial intertidal pools to existing seawalls. Mar Ecol Progr Ser 497:119–129CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bureau of Land Management (1996) Sampling vegetation attributes. Technical Reference 1734-4. Bureau of Land Management, DenverGoogle Scholar
  6. Caraco NF, Cole JJ, Raymond PA, Strayer DL, Pace ML, Findlay SEG, Fischer DT (1997) Zebra mussel invasion in a large, turbid river: phytoplankton response to increased grazing. Ecology 78:588–602CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cavaillé P, Dommanget F, Daumergue N, Loucougaray G, Spiegelberger T, Tabacchi E, Evette A (2013) Biodiversity assessment following a naturality gradient of riverbank protection structures in French prealps rivers. Ecol Eng 53:23–30CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Chapman MG, Blockley DJ (2009) Engineering novel habitats on urban infrastructure to increase intertidal biodiversity. Oecologia 161:625–635CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Chapman MG, Underwood AJ (2011) Evaluation of ecological engineering of “armoured” shorelines to improve their value as habitat. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 400:302–313CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Corcoran MK, Gray DH, Biedenham DS, Little CD, Leech JR, Pinkard F, Bailey P, Lee LT (2010) Literature review—vegetation on levees. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Engineer Research and Development Center ERDC-SR10-2Google Scholar
  11. Dalton S (2012) Shoreline Use and Perception Survey Report. In association with and published by the Hudson River Sustainable Shorelines Project, Staatsburg, NY 12580. Available at http://www.hrnerr.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2012/08/HRSS-Shoreline-Users-Perceptions-Survey-Report-Final.pdf
  12. Findlay SEG, Kiviat E, Nieder WC, Blair EA (2002) Functional assessment of a reference wetland set as a tool for science, management and restoration. Aquat Sci 64:107–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Firth LB, Thompson RC, Bohn K, Abbiati M, Airoldi L, Bouma TJ, Bozzeda F, Ceccherelli VU, Colangelo MA, Evans A, Ferrario F, Hanley ME, Hinz H, Hoggert SPG, Jackson JE, Moore P, Morgan EH, Perkol-Finkel S, Skov MW, Strain EM, van Belzen J, Hawkins SJ (2014) Between a rock and a hard place: environmental and engineering considerations when designing coastal defence structures. Coast Eng 87:122–135CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Francis RA, Hoggart SPG (2012) The flora of urban river wallscapes. River Res Appl 28:1200–1216CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Geyer WR, Chant R (2006) The physical oceanography processes in the Hudson River estuary. In: Levinton JS, Waldman JR (eds) The Hudson River estuary. Cambridge University Press, New York, pp 24–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Harris C, Strayer DL, Findlay S (2014) The ecology of freshwater wrack along natural and engineered Hudson River shorelines. Hydrobiologia 722:233–245CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Hoggart SPG, Francis RA (2014) Use of coir rolls for habitat enhancement of urban river walls. Fundam Appl Limnol 185:19–30CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Krukeberg AR (2004) Geology and plant life: the effects of landforms and rock types on plants. University of Washington Press, SeattleGoogle Scholar
  19. Lazorchak JM, Klemm DJ, Peck DV (eds) (1998) Environmental monitoring and assessment program—surface waters: field operations and methods for measuring the ecological condition of wadeable streams. EPA/620/R-94/004F. United States Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DCGoogle Scholar
  20. McCune B, Grace JB (2002) Analysis of ecological communities. MjM Software Design, Gleneden BeachGoogle Scholar
  21. Miller D (2005) Shoreline inventory of the Hudson River. Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Available at http://gis.ny.gov/gisdata/inventories/details.cfm?DSID=1136
  22. Naiman RJ, Décamps H, McClain ME (2005) Riparia: ecology, conservation, and management of streamside communities. Elsevier Academic Press, BurlingtonGoogle Scholar
  23. Perrow MR, Davy AJ (eds) (2002) Handbook of ecological restoration, volumes 1 and 2. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  24. Pickett STA, Cadenasso ML, Meiners SJ (2009) Ever since Clements: from succession to vegetation dynamics and understanding to intervention. Appl Veg Sci 12:9–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Purcell TR, DeVries DR, Wright RA (2013) The relationship between shoreline development and resident fish communities in a southeastern US reservoir. Lake Reserv Manag 29:270–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Shields FD, Ethridge LT, Waller TN (1990) A study of vegetation on revetments. Sacramento River Bank Protection Project, Phase 1: literature review and pilot study. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Waterways Experiment Station Technical Report HL-90-19Google Scholar
  27. Strayer DL, Findlay SEG (2010) Ecology of freshwater shore zones. Aquat Sci 72:127–163CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Strayer DL, Findlay SEG, Miller D, Malcom HM, Fischer DT, Coote T (2012) Biodiversity in Hudson River shore zones: influence of shoreline type and physical structure. Aquat Sci 74:597–610CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Toft JD, Ogston AS, Heerhartz SM, Cordell JR, Flemer EE (2013) Ecological response and physical stability of habitat enhancements along an urban armored shoreline. Ecol Eng 57:97–108CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Tongway TJ, Ludwig JA (2011) Restoring disturbed landscapes: putting principles into practice. Island Press, Washington, DCCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (1995). Design of coastal revetments, seawalls, and bulkheads. EM 1110-2-1614. Available at http://www.publications.usace.army.mil/Portals/76/Publications/EngineerManuals/EM_1110-2-1614.pdf
  32. Wensink SM (2014) Does riprap alter the structure and function of Lake St. Clair shoreline ecosystems? Thesis, Oakland University, RochesterGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Basel 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • David L. Strayer
    • 1
  • Erik Kiviat
    • 2
  • Stuart E. G. Findlay
    • 1
  • Nancy Slowik
    • 2
  1. 1.Cary Institute of Ecosystem StudiesMillbrookUSA
  2. 2.Hudsonia Ltd.AnnandaleUSA

Personalised recommendations