In 2011, Channelkeeper released a Ventura River Restoration Report summarizing the results of a multi-year effort to identify habitat impairments and restoration opportunities within the lower Ventura River watershed. For this report, Channelkeeper built upon years of Ventura River Stream Team monitoring data by conducting field surveys, interviewing local community members, analyzing aerial photographs, and reviewing historic records. The report identifies several factors found to be contributing to habitat degradation in the lower watershed, including significant historic physical modifications to the river and stream channels due to floodplain development and flood control measures, non-point pollution sources, dams, invasive species, and human habitation in the river bottom. The report also identifies large-scale, overarching watershed issues that threaten riparian habitat such as increasing water supply demands and floodplain development.
We highlighted several opportunities for habitat restoration including traditional forms of stream bank and riparian restoration as well as opportunities to address sources of water quality impairment and other activities degrading habitat. We highlighted agricultural, industrial, and urban land uses contributing to water quality impairment. We developed a list of projects and recommendations to provide conceptual starting points to facilitate further assessment and implementation. Our report was widely distributed and well-received by the Ventura River community.
Channelkeeper continues to build off of our list of recommended actions and projects through our current efforts to address trash, nutrients, animal waste, and sediment contamination in the watershed. We also participate as an active member of the Friends of the Ventura River, currently working through a National Park Service Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Grant on a plan to develop trail connections to a Ventura River Parkway.