Maintenance of Natural Sustainable Riparian Communities Located Within the Middle Sheyenne Watershed

Project Overview

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2009: $9,528.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2011
Grant Recipient: North Dakota State University
Region: North Central
State: North Dakota
Graduate Student:
Faculty Advisor:
Edward DeKeyser
North Dakota State University

Annual Reports

Information Products


  • Additional Plants: native plants
  • Animals: bovine


  • Animal Production: grazing management, grazing - continuous, grazing - rotational, range improvement, stocking rate, watering systems
  • Crop Production: agroforestry, forestry
  • Education and Training: demonstration, extension, on-farm/ranch research
  • Natural Resources/Environment: riverbank protection
  • Production Systems: agroecosystems, holistic management
  • Sustainable Communities: sustainability measures

    Proposal abstract:

    The majority of the riparian corridor of the Middle Sheyenne is forest, native rangeland, or undisturbed grassland. Currently, most of this area is utilized for forage by domestic livestock in animal production systems. If managed improperly, many negative impacts from grazing animals will occur on riparian communities and stream water quality. An inventory and condition determination of the grazed areas will be completed during the growing seasons of 2008, 2009, and 2010. These inventories will allow for the utilization of proper restoration techniques in obtaining the desired plant community. Range technical assistance including consultation with ranchers, creation and dispersal of media outlining best management practices, and meetings will be developed. Educational media will be distributed through extension and peer reviewed publications, professional meetings, workshops, and other media. Report to cooperating agencies every four months on research progress, findings, and completed tasks. Summary of research findings will be published in the form of a doctoral thesis and articles submitted to relevant peer reviewed journals. Increased information concerning the plant communities and proper grazing management of the riparian corridors of the Middle Sheyenne will help ranchers utilize these areas in a way that is both sustainable and profitable.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    The objectives of this project are:
    1) identify the natural sustainable plant communities and best management practices of the above watershed through Ecological Site Description development
    2) provide rangeland technical assistance through media development and consultation with relevant land managers

    Identification of plant community states and plant community health by determining states, transitions, and indicators within the Middle Sheyenne watershed, aiding in the establishment of realistic goals for restoration and maintenance of natural sustainable communities. Development of riparian range and forestry management recommendations targeted at restoring proper ecosystem function. Development of educational media including brochures, pamphlets, extension manuals, and meetings/ field days/ workshops with ranchers to review grazing recommendations for riparian ecosystems.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.