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US Army Corps of Engineers
Mississippi Valley Division

St. Paul District Forestry

St. Paul District HGM's

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The Hydrogeomorphic Method (HGM) is a three-stage process to identify ecosystem restoration and management options.  A major benefit is the ability to determine what a sustainable "desired future condition" can be in large river floodplains.  HGM evaluations are based on 1) information on geomorphology, soils, topography, and hydrology to determine type, distribution, and sustaining ecological processes of Presettlement communities; 2) a desire to emulate natural water regimes and natural vegetation communities where possible; 3) an understanding of local and regional land use changes; 4) incorporation of state-of-the-art scientific knowledge of wetland/floodplain ecological processes and key plant and animal species; and 5) recognition of the desire for multiple uses.  The three-stages of HGM are:  first, to determine the historic condition and ecological processes of an area and its surrounding landscapes; second, determine alterations in hydrological condition, topography, vegetation community structure and distribution, and resource availability to key fish and wildlife species; and third, to identify options and approaches to restore specific habitats and ecological conditions.  (Heitmeyer, M.E. 2007. Feasibility Investigation: Hydrogeomorphic Modeling and Analyses Upper Mississippi River System Floodplain. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Report. West Alton, MO.)



    A workshop was held in New Albin, IA on 28-29 September, 2009 to develop a hydrogeomorphic (HGM) evaluation of ecosystem restoration and management options for the Reno Bottoms area of Pool 9 of the Mississippi River including possible physical and water management alterations to the Pool 8 Embankment and other Reno Bottoms locations.