RIPARIAN BUFFER PROJECTS
Over the past 10 years, the stream conservancy has been very active in riparian buffer and streamside restoration projects to improve Bushkill Creek.
In 2009, the conservancy published a comprehensive guide Establishing Streamside Buffer Areas in Your Park or Community. This year, we produced a two-page fact sheet on the benefits of riparian buffers in Bushkill Creek watershed.
Upper Bushkill Creek watershed
In 2012, the Bushkill Stream Conservancy secured a grant from the Coldwater Heritage Partnership to restore riparian buffers along streams in the upper Bushkill Creek watershed. With additional funding from PPL Electric Utilities Corporation and support for the project form landowners, Bushkill Township, the PA Bureau of Forestry and the Northampton County Conservation District, the Conservancy purchased and planted more than 1,500 live stakes of willows and dogwoods along the banks of Bushkill Creek and Sober's Run. These plantings will help stabilize stream banks, prevent erosion and sediment pollution, and shade and cool these streams for temperature sensitive fish, like trout, for which Bushkill Creek and Sober's Run are locally famous.
Bushkill Creek and Delaware River Confluence
This project included removal of invasive plants and planting native vegetation along 10,000 square feet of stream and river bank where the Bushkill Creek enters the Delaware River. An educational sign was also installed describing the link between the Bushkill Creek and the Delaware Estuary. The project connects directly to a $9 million redevelopment project along the Bushkill Creek Corridor in the City of Easton.
Lions Park and Palmer Bike Path
Riparian buffer restoration and enhancement was completed along the about 1,000 feet on both sides of the Bushkill Creek in Lions Park, located in Forks Township, and the Palmer Bike Path, located in Palmer Township. Invasive plants were removed from the project area and about 250 native trees and shrubs were installed. A warm season grass demonstration meadow was installed. Educational signs were put in on both sides of the creek.
Palmer Park at the Villages of Mill Race
Invasive plants were removed along about 3,000 feet of the Bushkill Creek. Native shrubs and trees were installed in this area to improve the riparian buffer. Two warm season meadows were also planted at the park.
Erosion Control at Henry's Woods, Jacobsburg State Park
Erosion of 400' of Bushkill Creek in a stand of old growth forest (Henry's Woods) was undermining 20 mature trees and adding sediment to the stream. Henry's Woods is one of the most popular natural attractions in the Lehigh Valley and the effects of human impact have contributed to the erosion problem.This Growing Greener project included the installation of erosion control devices to stabilize the stream bank as well as the installation of trail barriers and native restoration plantings to prevent future erosion.
With volunteers from Forks of the Delaware Chapter of Trout Unlimited, in-kind contributions of labor and equipment from Forks and Palmer Townships, and funding from Bushkill Stream Conservancy, the partnership has completed a variety of stream improvement and erosion-control projects over the past decade.Included have been streambank plantings for erosion control along the Binney Meadows section of the main stream and at the Edelmans crossing of the Little Bushkill, among other areas; "sawtooth" stone structures below Edgewood Avenue, at Bushkill Park, and near Penn Pump Park; and removal of downed trees from the railroad bridge at Penn Pump. The 2001 project involved widening and leveling the access strip, installing erosion control buffers, and adding guard rails at the popular duck-feeding area along Tatamy Road in Palmer.