Analytical Frameworks for Wetland and Riparian Buffers in Agricultural Settings

Learn how to THINK about wetland and riparian buffers in agricultural settings.


Friday, October 4, 2013
8:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Elkhorn Slough Reserve
Lunch will be provided

COST: $100.00
Payable by check to Elkhorn Slough Foundation
Payable by credit card (online)


Instructor Information

Ms. Kaley Grimland
Triple M Ranch Wetland Restoration Project Manager
Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association

Ms. Carlene Henneman
Point Blue Conservation Science

Mr. Dale Huss
Vice President of Production
Ocean Mist/Sea Mist Farms

Dr. Marc Los Huertos
Associate Professor, Science and Environmental Pol
California State University Monterey Bay

Mr. Hector Mora
Hector's Organic Farm

Mr. Paul Robins
Executive Director
Resource Conservation District of Monterey County

Mr. Francisco Serrano
Serrano Organic Farm


Grey Hayes
(831) 274-8700



See also: ALBA Wetland Restoration, Polluted Runoff

This one-day workshop trained participants in how to improve their analyses in consideration of the use of buffers for wetland and riparian areas in agricultural settings.  Presenters trained participants in analytical frameworks for determining if and how buffers could be effective at providing pollution prevention and wildlife habitat benefits, how implementation of buffers affects farming, and how to engage with stakeholders when considering buffer implementation.  The workshop included hands-on, skills-improving exercise, including field exercises, to improve integration of course material. 

Instructors have expertise in the wide range of subjects key to better understanding the subject matter.  Workshop instructor Marc Los Huertos, with CSU Monterey Bay, has extensive research and practical experience in analyzing buffer effects on reducing water pollution in agricultural settings.  Instructor Carlie Henneman, with Point Blue Conservation Science, draws on her own as well as her organization’s experience with wildlife ecology and buffers in training others in improved conservation approaches.  Presenter Dale Huss, with Ocean Mist Farms, has extensive experience with successful farming operations and management practices that reduce agricultural impacts to surrounding lands.  Paul Robins, Executive Director of the Resource Conservation District (RCD) of Monterey County, will share the region’s wealth of RCD experience engaging stakeholders with conservation practices such as buffers.  During an in-depth field training session, participants will also have opportunities to discuss farming operations and buffers with Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA) affiliated Francisco Serrano (Serrano Organic Farm), Hector Mora (Hector’s Organic Farm), and Guilebaldo Nuñez (Nuñez Farms) as well as Kaley Grimland- ALBA’s Triple M Ranch Wetland Restoration Project Manager.

Workshop Format

The workshop included indoor presentations, group discussion, and exercises as well as field-based training near the indoor workshop venue.  Both the indoor and field-based training elements focused on training participants in analysis of wildlife, water pollution, and agricultural considerations to determine if and how buffers might be appropriate.  The workshop included numerous exercises to improve participant skills at completing such analyses.  Participants had the opportunity to integrate the broader indoor/lecture training by examining a field site where both wetland and riparian buffers adjoin agricultural land. This field component included the more specific, site-based analyses typical when deciding if a buffer is appropriate for the goals at a given site.  And, during this field-based training, participants were able to discuss with the stakeholders how such approaches affect their agricultural and land management.

The indoor presentations took place at the Elkhorn Slough Reserve, and the afternoon field-based training took place at two locations, each short drives from the Reserve. 


Workshop Objectives


By attending the course, participants significantly improved their skill at:

  • Determining how buffers might reduce water pollutants
  • Determining how buffers might improve wildlife habitat
  • Determining how buffers might affect adjacent farming
  • Understanding basic principles in collaborating with stakeholders to better sustain social, economic, and ecological goals

Topics Discussed

  • What are buffers?
  • Goals setting and prioritization when considering protection strategies for wetland and riparian areas
  • Pollution prevention
  • Wildlife habitat protection
  • Interactions between agriculture and buffers
  • Stakeholder engagement with buffer implementation


Documents and Publications

Contact List
We encourage participants to download the contact list to assist with arranging a rideshare or to get in contact with someone you met at the workshop. Those interested in sharing a ride to the event are marked on the contact list.

Agenda: Analytical Frameworks for Wetland and Riparian Buffers in Agricultural Settings
PDF, 342KB
Elkhorn Slough Coastal Training

August 2013
Presentation: Managing buffers to meet water quality goals
PDF, 9.7MB
Marc Los Huertos
California State University, Monterey Bay
October 4, 2013
Riparian habitat management for reptiles and amphibians on Corps of Engineers projects
PDF, 3.4MB
Dickerson, D.D.
Support River Restoration: Science shows restoration works – for wildlife, nature, and people
PRBO Conservation Science
Elkhorn Coastal Training
A review of vegetated buffers and a meta-analysis of their mitigation efficacy in reducing nonpoint source pollution
PDF, 827KB
Zhang, X.Y., Liu, X.M., Zhang, M.H., Dahlgren, R.A. & Eitzel, M.
Journal of Environmental Quality 39: 76-84
Major factors influencing the efficacy of vegetated buffers on sediment trapping: A review and analysis
PDF, 618KB
Liu, Xingmei; Zhang, Xuyang; Zhang, Minghua
Journal of Environmental Quality 37: 1667-1674
Maximizing benefits from riparian revegetation efforts: local-and landscape-level determinants of avian response
PDF, 365KB
Gardali, T. & Holmes, A.L.
Environmental Management 48: 28-37
Multiple functions of buffer strips in farming areas
PDF, 549KB
Borin, Maurizio; Passoni, Matteo; Thiene, Mara; Tempesta, Tiziano
European journal of agronomy
Nitrate attenuation in groundwater: a review of biogeochemical controlling processes
PDF, 1.1MB
Rivett, M.O., Buss, S.R., Morgan, P., Smith, J.W. & Bemment, C.D.
Water Research 42: 4215-4232
Phosphorus retention and remobilization in vegetated buffer strips: a review
PDF, 615KB
Roberts, William M; Stutter, Marc I; Haygarth, Philip M
Journal of Environmental Quality 41: 389-399
Relationships between soil physicochemical, microbiological properties, and nutrient release in buffer soils compared to field soils.
PDF, 1.2MB
Stutter, M.I. & Richards, S.
Journal of Environmental Quality 41: 400-409
Riparian buffer strips as a multifunctional management tool in agricultural landscapes: introduction
PDF, 761KB
Stutter, M.I., Chardon, W.J. & Kronvang, B.
Journal of Environmental Quality 41: 297-303
Road sediment: characterization and implications for the performance of vegetated strips for treating road run-off
PDF, 210KB
Science of The Total Environment
The Tarland catchment initiative and its effect on stream water quality and macroinvertebrate indices.
PDF, 1.7MB
Bergfur, J., Demars, B., Stutter, M., Langan, S. & Friberg, N.
Journal of Environmental Quality 41: 314-321
Transport of Cryptosporidium parvum oocysts through vegetated buffer strips and estimated filtration efficiency
PDF, 246KB
Atwill, Edward; R Hou, Lingling; Karle, Betsy; M Harter, Thomas; Tate, Kenneth W; Dahlgren, Randy A
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 68: 5517-5527
Vegetated buffer strips can lead to increased release of phosphorus to waters: A biogeochemical assessment of the mechanisms.
PDF, 401KB
Stutter, M.I., Langan, S.J. & Lumsdon, D.G.
Environmental science & technology 43: 1858-1863
Vegetative buffer zones as pesticide filters for simulated surface runoff
PDF, 195KB
Syversen, Nina; Bechmann, Marianne
Ecological Engineering 22: 175-184
Why climate change makes riparian restoration more important than ever: recommendations for practice and research
PDF, 658KB
Seavy, N.E., Gardali, T., Golet, G.H., Griggs, F.T., Howell, C.A., Kelsey, R., Small, S.L., Viers, J.H. & Weigand, J.F.
Ecological Restoration 27: 330-338
Buffer strips for stream temperature control
PDF, 3.3MB
Brazier, Jon Roger; Brown George Wallace
Forest Research Laboratory; School of Forestry, Oregon State University
California riparian habitat restoration handbook
PDF, 3.5MB
Griggs, F Thomas
River Partners
Conservation buffers: design guidelines for buffers, corridors, and greenways
PDF, 7.5MB
Bentrup, Gary
US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station
Design recommendations for riparian corridors and vegetated buffer strips
PDF, 1.4MB
Richard A. Fischer and J. Craig Fischenich
US Army Engineer Research and Development Center
April 2000
The riparian bird conservation plan: a strategy for reversing the decline of riparian associated birds in California
PDF, 4.3MB
Riparian Habitat Joint Venture
California Partners in Flight
Version 2.0; 2004
Width of riparian zones for birds
PDF, 475KB
Fischer, R. & Theriot, R.F.
Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station
January 2000


Central Coast Water Quality Data Synthesis, Assessment and Management (SAM) Project

Questions and Answers

Submit a question on this subject and we'll provide an answer. coastaltraining@elkhornslough.org