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Tule Creek West: Sediment-Trap Pond and Channel Stabilization

A project with Aransas County that installed a sediment trap pond, removed invasive vegetation, reshaped and stabilized portions of Tule Creek, and monitored and modeled the effectiveness of these practices.

Background

The Tule Creek watershed drains areas of the city of Rockport and the town of Fulton. The area population and impervious cover are expected to increase in the next two decades, causing an associated increase in stormwater runoff. Aransas County, in cooperation with with local communities, developed a stormwater management plan for the watershed.

Scientists have identified polluted stormwater runoff as a principal cause of declining water quality and loss of wildlife habitat within Little Bay, into which Tule Creek flows. Little Bay and its ecological health are important resources for the community. The bay provides recreational activities for residents and visitors, and provides habitat for local wildlife.

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Project Description

This project implemented several stormwater best management practices (BMPs) along West Tule Creek including: 

  • A sediment-trap pond along West Tule Creek below its confluence with North Tule Creek
  • Selective removal of shallow-rooted invasive vegetation

These BMPs allow for natural colonization of deep-rooted native trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants and reduce sediment loads downstream. Aransas county also widened, reshaped, and stabilized additional portions of the creek, testing several restoration practices. They monitored sediment levels below the sediment trap and other locations and used continuous simulation monitoring to evaluate the effectiveness of the BMPs and stabilization features. There was a substantial reduction in sediment flowing from the areas treated.

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Documents

For More Information

To find out more about the NPS Program, call 512-239-6682 or e-mail us at nps@tceq.texas.gov.

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