Assessment of Habitat

Physical Habitat Assessment

The third component of our routine monitoring procedure is assessment of the quality of physical habitat at the site using a variant of the USDAStream Visual Assessment Protocol (SVAP)  adapted to the conditions of Talamanca.  SVAP is a user-friendly, extremely low-cost method which permits observers, after less than an hour of training, to derive an SVAP score, on a scale of 1 to 10 by analyzing factors such as

*Condition of the riparian vegetative buffer.

* Degree of sedimentation.

* Abundance and condition of habitat features such as pools and riffles

* Nearby sources of organic pollution

* Barriers to fish movement.