Strategy RC1.3: Limit stream crossings in headwaters.
Stream crossings increase sedimentation and impede the upstream migration of fish, including native brook trout. In areas where existing populations of endemic or endangered aquatic species exist, attempts should be made to design subdivisions and other types of development in ways that limit the number of stream crossings.
In order to limit the number of stream crossings in headwaters, it is recommended that local agencies and non-profit organizations work with state agencies to investigate the feasibility of creating a cost-share program for bridges and culverts to limit impact of private stream crossings on water quality. Where stream crossings are necessary, they should be designed to minimize the impact to local hydrology. In most cases, this will result in increased costs.
There is a need for public and/or non-governmental agencies to study when and how to partner with private interests to ensure that, where appropriate, spanning structures are built. In addition, retrofitting existing stream crossings and reconnecting sections of headwater streams sustain native brook trout and increase genetic diversity and resiliency.