What is Watershed Assessment?

Most people looking for information about the Yuba River have one of the following questions driving their curiosity:

  • Is the river in good condition? If not, where not, and why not?
  • What are the features and processes important to water quality and fish habitat?
  • How do human activities affect water quality and fish habitat?
  • What are the cumulative effects of land management practices over time?

These questions are the basis for watershed assessment, a means to reviewing, organizing or analyzing information in order to determine which features in the watershed are working well, and which are not. Watershed assessments help lead to identification of:

  • Areas with potential for improvement
  • High-priority areas for restoration or protection
  • Types of improvement actions that will be most effective Yuba Shed facilitates watershed assessment through the organization and dissemination of relevant information.

The California Watershed Assessment Manual provides valuable guidance.  The work of watershed assessment necessarily involves collaboration among stakeholders, and guiding questions of concern. As Yuba Shed grows in content and tools, it is expected that organizations will increase their ability to work together to complete various forms or components of watershed assessment.