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BENTHOS STUDY FOR BAGNELL
AmerenUE relicensed the Bagnell Dam hydroelectric project on the Osage River in south-central Missouri following the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Integrated Licensing Process. In support of the relicensing effort, EA conducted and participated in several natural resource investigations including fish, benthic macroinvertebrate, and habitat characterizations. The 72-mile study area in the lower Osage River began at River Mile 82 below the Bagnell Dam (Lake of the Ozarks) and ended at River Mile 10 upstream of the Missouri River. The sampling design developed by EA divided the study area into a longitudinal series of six designated reaches. For benthos, field work included seasonal macroinvertebrate sampling utilizing multiple gear types, as well as detailed habitat measurements that included depth, velocity, and substrate characteristics. Sampling utilized rock basket artificial substrate samplers, semi-quantitative kick nets, and qualitative techniques. Results of the benthic investigation were later used in conjunction with fisheries and mussel data to evaluate various seasonal flow scenarios below the dam. During the course of the study, EA assisted AmerenUE and its licensing contractor with stakeholder and resource agency consultations.