|Rocky headwater stream at Salmon River
||David M. Hunt
SubSystem: Natural Streams
State Rarity Rank:
Global Rarity Rank:
Did you know?
Rocky headwater streams have a characteristic seasonal fluctuation in flow volume. In the spring, when the snow melts and rains are heavy, rocky headwater streams can become torrents. However, by mid- to late summer, the streams can become so slow that they are stagnant.
|State Ranking Justification||
There are several thousand occurrences statewide. Many documented occurrences have good viability and are protected on public land or private conservation land. This community has statewide distribution, and includes several high quality examples. The current trend of this community is probably stable for occurrences on public land, or declining slightly elsewhere due to moderate threats related to development pressure or alteration to the natural hydrology.
The number and miles of rocky headwater streams in New York have probably remained stable in recent decades as a result of water quality regulations. Several examples have shown improvement in water quality in recent decades attributed to improved treatment of municipal and industrial waste (Bode et al. 1993).
The number and miles of rocky headwater streams in New York are probably comparable to historical numbers, but the water quality of several of these rivers likely declined significantly prior to the enforcement of water quality regulations (New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Division of Water 2000).