Effectiveness of Spur Dike Notching

by F. Douglas Shields, Jr., US Army Engineers Waterways, Experiment Station, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Soil Properties Evaluation from Centrifugal Models and Field Performance


The most widely used technique of ameliorating the environmental effects of river-training works has been to construct notches in spur dikes (or to allow notches to remain in damaged dikes) to prevent sediment accretion below the dike and to develop diverse depth, velocity, and bed material within the dike field conductive to a diverse aquatic community. Despite the fact that over 1,500 notches have been constructed along the Missouri River and several dozen along the Mississippi River, the physical and biological effects are not well documented. The purpose of this paper is to describe the physical effects of notching several spur dikes along the middle Missouri River.

Subject Headings: Levees and dikes | Rivers and streams | Sediment | Bed materials | Aquatic habitats | Damage (material) | Fluid velocity | Biological processes | Missouri River | Mississippi River

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