Ruddiman Creek Mouth

Ruddiman Creek Mouth | Muskegon Lake

The Ruddiman Creek Mouth site is located along the public bike path on the south shore of Muskegon Lake. The site is located at the mouth of Ruddiman Creek and is owned by the City of Muskegon. Much of the site is constructed of historically placed foundry fill, slag, and concrete debris.

The site was restored by removing slag and concrete from the shoreline and replacing it with native grasses, shrubs, and wildflowers. Bioengineered lifts were installed at the northernmost extent of the site where the highest wave energy is experienced.  Additionally, marine debris such as tires, slabwood, and concrete was removed from a 4 acre area at the mouth of the creek.

Year restored: 2010

Total Area Restored (by habitat type):
Open water wetland=4.0 acres
Shoreline softening=2,050 linear feet (combined with Amoco site)
Emergent Wetland=1.61 acres (combined with Amoco site)
Upland Buffer=1.64 acres (combined with Amoco site)

Construction Facts:
$486,000 construction cost



2019 Site Monitoring Summary

Site Summary Statistics

2019 Native Mean Coefficient of Conservatism: 4.4
2019 Floristic Quality Index (FQI): 13.9
2019 Total Native Species: 14
2019 Percent Invasive Species Cover: <5%

Invasive species currently present:
Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria)

For more information on invasive plants and their management, CLICK HERE

Dominant native species:
Pickerel weed (Pontedaria cordata)

Coontail (Ceratophyllum demersum)
Duckweed (Lemna minor)

For more information on native plants around Muskegon Lake, CLICK HERE

Site Summary:

High water levels have shifted much of the plant community toward submergent and emergent wetland species. Although this shift has occurred, the majority of the plants at the site are native and there are very few invasive plants present. The site is generally stable with little erosion, with the exception of a small amount of soil loss toward the northern end of the site.

Native Mean C=average coefficient of conservatism (C). Each plant is assigned a “C” value, which represents the probability that a plant will occur in an undisturbed area. C values range from 0-10. Wetlands with a native mean C greater than 3.5 are considered “high quality aquatic resources” (USFWS)
FQI=Floristic Quality Inventory, which is an indication of quality of the vegetation at a given site. In general, wetlands with an FQI above 20 are considered “high quality aquatic resources” (USFWS)

Management Recommendations

Invasive species are minimally present at the site. The only invasive plant species documented was purple loosestrife, which can be removed by hand pulling or selective herbicide applications.

For more information on invasive plant management, CLICK HERE.

The site should be monitored 2-3 times per year to look for erosion and any invasive plants.