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October CreekSpeak Series: Clancy McConnell – Historical Ecology and Restoration of Putah Creek

October 19 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

The construction of Monticello and Putah Diversion Dams caused dramatic hydrologic and geomorphic change on Lower Putah Creek, but this change has not yet been thoroughly characterized. The development of new methods in geographic information systems (GIS), a computer mapping software, has enabled scientists to more efficiently study river systems and how they change over time. In this study, I used a suite of tools in novel ways to analyze how damming changed peak streamflows on Lower Putah Creek and how damming and dredging changed the size and shape of the channel. In several in-progress studies, I am applying some of these tools to study how changes to hydrology and geomorphology affected riparian forest distribution on Lower Putah Creek, and how the tools could be used to inform channel-appropriate restoration designs.

Clancy is a PhD candidate in Geography at UC Davis. In his dissertation, he is researching the effects of damming on rivers and is developing new ways to design and study river restoration. He is also serving as the GIS mapping researcher for the UC Davis Center for Regional Change, where he studies local zoning policies to inform sustainable development, and has taught the Intro to GIS course and Site Ecology course. This fall, he will be starting a postdoc at the UC Davis Information Center for the Environment, where he will use GIS to study tree species distribution and inform policies for reforestation under climate change.

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October 19
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm