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Tule Creek West: Sediment-Trap Pond and Channel Stabilization

A project with Aransas County to install a sediment trap pond, remove invasive vegetation, and reshape and stabilize portions of Tule Creek, and to monitor and model the effectiveness of these practices.


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 has worked cooperatively with local communities to develop 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 included several stormwater BMPs along West Tule Creek. Project personnel built a sediment-trap pond along West Tule Creek below its confluence with North Tule Creek to reduce sediment loads downstream.

They also selectively removed invasive vegetation with shallow root systems from riparian areas to allow for natural colonization of deep-rooted native trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants. Afterward, they 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 pond and stabilization features. There was a substantial reduction in sediment flowing from the areas treated.

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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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