Wetland Delineation

Our Services

Wetland Delineation

This week we performed a wetland delineation in Whitley County, Kentucky to fulfill requirements under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.

The wetland delineation in Whitley County, Kentucky was conducted by BSC personnel in support of the requirements of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (CWA). Field surveys for the following determination were conducted in accordance with the 1987 United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Wetlands Delineation Manual (USACE, 1987) and the Final Regional Supplement for the Piedmont and Eastern Mountains Region (USACE, 2012).

According to USACE “This Regional Supplement is part of a nationwide effort to address regional wetland characteristics and improve the accuracy and efficiency of wetland delineation procedures. Regional differences in climate, geology, soils,hydrology, plant and animal communities, and other factors are important to the identification and functioning of wetlands. The regional supplement was finalized in 2012 and covers all or portions of the District of Columbia and 20 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia” (USACE 2012).

The determination within our report is subject to review and approval by the Nashville District of the USACE. As requested by the Nashville District USACE only the area within the vicinity of the proposed work was evaluated for the wetland delineation. As indicated in our report there was a small area that appeared to meet the soils, hydrology, and vegetation characteristics for wetlands as defined by USACE. See more of our services here.

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United States Army Corps of Engineers. 1987. Corps of Engineers Wetlands Delineation Manual. Technical Report Y-87-1, Department of the Army, Waterways Experiment Station.

United States Army Corps of Engineers. 2012. Final Regional Supplement to the Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual: Eastern Mountains and Piedmont Region, ed. J.S. Wakeley, R.W. Lichvar, and C.V. Noble. ERDC/EL TR 10-XX. Vicksburg, MS: U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center.


Wetland Delineation Kentucky
Wetland Delineation Area (in Background)

Bioassessments & Benthic Macroinvertebrates

Waterfall / Step Pool / Stream Assessments

Bioassessments & Benthic Macroinvertebrates collections were conducted this week and we had to share some photos from the field during the macroinvertebrate surveys in Harlan County, Kentucky. The above average rainfall in May 2016 revealed breathtaking waterfalls in this watershed.

Waterfall / Kentucky / Harlan Co.
Waterfall / Kentucky / Harlan Co.

Biological Systems Consultants typically assesses sampling sites for Kentucky macroinvertebrates February through May in headwater streams and May through September in wadeable streams.

Waterfall / Biological Assessment
Waterfall / Biological Assessment


Waterfall / Step Pool / Stream Assessments
Waterfall / Step Pool / Stream Assessments
Confluence / Stream Pool / Bedrock Substrate
Confluence of two tributaries / Pool Feature

Macroinvertebrate Analysis & Identification

Benthic Macroinvertebrate Collection and Analysis

Macroinvertebrate Analysis & Identification

Order: Ephemeroptera

Family: Ephemeridae

Genus: Ephemera

Total Number of Species: 6 (1 recently extinct)

Habitat: Lotic & Lentic Systems – Depositional Areas, consisting of sand and gravel

Habit: Burrowers

Trophic Relationships: Collectors; Predators; Filterers

North American Distribution: Widespread



Macroinvertebrate Analysis Identification

Specimen taken from an aquatic macroinvertebrate sample conducted in Bell County, Kentucky during baseline studies for an individual KPDES/NPDES permit.


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Merritt, R. W., K. W. Cummins, and M. B. Berg (eds). 2008. An Introduction to the Aquatic Insects of North America (4th ed.). Kendall/Hunt Publ. Co., Dubuque, IA 1158 pp

Fish Inventory

Stream Survey
2016 Blackside Dace Fish Inventory and Habitat Assessment for threatened species. We provide a wide variety of consulting services related to the aquatic ecosystem.

Habitat Restoration

Habitat restoration is an important tool for addressing a broad range of environmental challenges including providing permits for mitigation for streams using constructed wetlands. The BSC approach incorporates cost-effective design and build projects for the long-term management of natural resources by employing collaboration across experts from different fields ranging from biologists and ecologists to archaeologists. The site pictured below is currently in the early stages of restoration and are trending toward success thanks to some mitigation efforts and mother nature. Pictured below are restored stream channels, which are providing the revival of biological, chemical, and physical functions. Many macroinvertebrate and fish species have been observed throughout the sites; a great indication of restored habitat. Our experience covers a wide range of project development, from design to construction supervision and monitoring. BSC is also well trained to communicate with multiple regulatory agencies at the state, local, and federal levels. Our team has years of experience successfully negotiating agreements on restoration and permitting issues.

Stream Restoration

Mitigation 34