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Introduction How Rivers Run Stories Value Of A River What We Can Do
Restoring Ups and Downs on the Mississippi
(pg 8 of 11)

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The drawdowns have shown promise. Plants such as arrowhead, rice cutgrass, nutgrass, bulrush, and cattail sprouted from the exposed seedbed. The lush new growth has not only provided food for waterfowl and other wildlife; it has also begun to anchor the fine sediment that caused the backwater to become so turbid on windy days.

The drawdown had little effect on barge traffic. The Corps dredged the main channel a little the first year, but didn't need to the second year. The Corps also dredged some channels to marinas and boat ramps.

The Corps and natural resource agencies of states along the river will study the recovery of the pool during several years of higher water levels. Meanwhile, they will consider drawdowns to restore other pools on the river.

"Restoration of these ecosystems seems so possible," said Davis. "The response can be dramatic and very rapid once the obstacles to restoration are removed."

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Gulf of Mexico
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