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#1011166 - 06/28/19 08:32 PM Slide blocks Fraser River
bushbear Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 4608
Loc: Sequim


https://www.castanet.net/news/BC/260057/Fraser-slide-blocks-salmon

BC
Fraser slide blocks salmon
The Canadian Press - Jun 28, 2019 / 5:21 pm | Story: 260057
Photo: DFO

A significant rock slide in the Fraser River continues to block salmon from migrating upstream to spawning grounds, raising concerns about impacts to species that are already in peril.

The federal and B.C. governments say they're working together to assess the impacts and come up with responses to the slide that happened around June 21 or 22 in a remote area near Big Bar, just west of Clinton.

The obstruction has created a five-metre waterfall. A Fisheries and Oceans Canada representative said Friday the department has installed acoustic monitoring equipment to determine if fish are able to pass up through the slide to the upper part of the river.

"Our initial assessment is that chinook salmon are holding below the rock slide and they're having difficulty getting up past the falls," said Bonnie Antcliffe, associate regional director general, on a conference call with reporters.

"However, until we have more information from the acoustic monitoring equipment, it's really difficult to confirm the extent of fish passage. Some fish may be getting up."

She said the department is planning to install a second acoustic monitoring device below the slide.

The department is looking at several options to address the problem, including monitoring the site to determine if fish are able to pass through the area when the water level drops naturally in the coming weeks, she said.

It's also considering reducing the velocity of water or the height of the falls, or providing passage for fish through engineering and rock work.

Another option would be moving the fish by truck from below the slide to above it, but that would be difficult because it is a remote area with little road access, she said.

"This is an extremely important situation and it's also very dynamic and it's very complex," Antcliffe said. "At this point, we're doing everything we can to ensure we address the issue quickly but also in an appropriate manner to ensure a successful outcome for fish."

Jennifer Davis, with the provincial Forests Ministry, said the natural turbidity of the Fraser River has made it challenging to determine how many fish are passing through. The area is also very remote, with steep canyon slopes and limited access for helicopters, she said.

Scientists on site are working hard to determine the magnitude of the problem and what responses can happen, Davis added, and they're also co-ordinating with First Nations and communities.

"There's a whole variety of things that can be looked at, but it's a bit premature to jump into which action it would be."

There are a number of stocks, including chinook, steelhead, coho and sockeye that would migrate above the barrier for spawning, and Fisheries and Oceans already has concerns about some of those species and has implemented conservation measures to protect them, said the department's Andrew Thomson.

"That's what's really at risk here, is further impairment of the stocks that are already in a critical zone," he said.

While there's no concrete figure on how many salmon are currently impacted, Thomson said typically at this time the run that would be most prominent would be chinook, and it's believed to be the early part of their migratory window.

But later in summer, Thomson said scientists would expect to see a very large number of chilko sockeye moving through the area — potentially upward of a million fish.

"Depending on the stock numbers, there could be quite a number of fish that would be below this barrier."


Edited by bushbear (06/28/19 08:35 PM)
Edit Reason: add link

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#1011168 - 06/28/19 10:09 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
cobble cruiser Offline
~B-F-D~

Registered: 03/27/09
Posts: 2192
Oh now you want to save fraser river stocks considering other anadromous fish not starting with the letters... s t e e l h e a d are in jeopardy. Maybe the masses in BC will now start caring. Its a crime that the DFO has allowed commercials to darn near send those incredible Thompson River steelhead into extinction with lies and deceit to the news headlines to boot. That alone should have made much bigger news then this slide.


Edited by cobble cruiser (06/28/19 10:10 PM)
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#1011171 - 06/28/19 10:37 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5466
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
I believe that DFO does not actually manage steelhead. They manage salmon and the province of BC actually manages the steelhead. But, if DFO's mandated salmon fisheries take an incidental harvest of steelhead, well oops.

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#1011176 - 06/29/19 07:11 AM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
_WW_ Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 01/30/13
Posts: 210
Loc: Skagit
Fortunately for the Thompson fish, this slide is above the confluence with the Fraser.
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#1011183 - 06/29/19 12:42 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5466
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
This slide will be most destructive to sockeye, as they are so brood-line focused. Assuming iy is not fixed for this year's adults, that brood-cycle gets blown away. There will be some slop from age 3 and 5, if it gets fixed for 2020.

On the other hand, because of multiple age at return the Chinook, chum, and steelhead above that site can recover faster.

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#1011538 - 07/09/19 09:18 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
bushbear Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 4608
Loc: Sequim
Here is an update on the Fraser River blockage. Not sure how much time they'll have for studies.....The river is warm and the water velocity is high.


Tuesday, July 09, 2019

The Fraser River Panel met Tuesday, July 9th to receive an update on the migration ofFraser River Sockeye and Pink salmon and review the status of migration conditions in the FraserRiver watershed, including an update of the rock slide at Big Bar. This rock slide occurred June 23, 2019 in a narrow portion of the Fraser River, and created a blockage and five-meter waterfall in this section of the river.

Options to remove or remediate the rock obstruction are being explored.
Meanwhile daily acoustic fish counting reports are being collected both above and below the rockslide. Mark-recapture methods are also being used to estimate the quantity of fish travelling throughthe site. Potential options to physically move fish upstream from the obstruction are also being explored.

Very few Sockeye salmon have been caught to-date in Fraser River Sockeye test fisheries. The Whonnock gillnet test fishery began June 24, and the Qualark gillnet test fishery began July 2. The Qualark and Mission hydroacoustics programs began July 1 and July 4, respectively.
Assessments will improve later this week with the addition of Cottonwood, Area 20 and Area 12 gill net test fisheries.

On July 8 the discharge of the Fraser River at Hope was 4,473 cms, which is approximately23% below average for this date. The temperature of the Fraser River at Qualark Creek on July 8was 16.20C, which is 0.70C higher than average for this date. Fraser River discharge levels and
water temperatures will be monitored closely to determine if specific management actions arerequired during the in-river migratory period to help achieve Sockeye escapement goals.

All Panel Area Waters remain closed to commercial salmon fishing.

The next in-season meeting of the Panel is scheduled to occur on Friday, July 12th, 2019.

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#1011540 - 07/09/19 10:11 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5466
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Be nice to have a little better location of the slide. It looks like this would hit, at least, the Early Stuart and Horsefly. Stuart, as the name implies, is the earliest. They are also perpetually having issues so while there may not be many, all spawners are needed.

Horsefly is a major recovery story, back from hundreds to millions. Like all Fraser stocks, it is very cyclic. One in 4 huge years. If this is a cycle year, then there will be some real issues with getting spawners up. If it is an off year, then there is lots of time.

As for pinks, they do go way past this location, but they do so on really large runs. The Fraser has been running lower and warmer than historically for a number of years.

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#1011544 - 07/10/19 08:17 AM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
bushbear Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 4608
Loc: Sequim
The slide is near Big Bar about 40 km NW of Clinton, BC.

Lots of links and video clips if you Google “Fraser River slide”

It is below the confluence of the Chilcotin River



Edited by bushbear (07/10/19 08:41 AM)
Edit Reason: Add information

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#1011557 - 07/10/19 02:32 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5466
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
If it is downstream of the Chilcotin that affects the Chilko, another of the major stocks. I think they come back sooner than Horsefly. I'll take a look at the forecasts and see what is in the gunsight.

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#1011568 - 07/10/19 07:49 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
eldplanko Offline
Fry

Registered: 06/27/12
Posts: 31
Serious question, if a completely natural disaster blocks a river, are humans under any ethical obligation to mitigate the effects on the impacted animals?

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#1011570 - 07/10/19 08:39 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5466
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Good question.

The Hells Gate slides, further downstream, were caused by the construction of the two railroads in the canyon, the CP and CN.

That question is the other side of the coin for times when we ladder natural blockages such as Tumwater Falls, Sunset Falls, and a number of the Columbia Gorge streams.

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#1011587 - 07/11/19 03:11 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: eldplanko]
_WW_ Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 01/30/13
Posts: 210
Loc: Skagit
Originally Posted By: eldplanko
Serious question, if a completely natural disaster blocks a river, are humans under any ethical obligation to mitigate the effects on the impacted animals?


Ethical obligation? No. However, if there is money to be made...
_________________________
Catch & Release Is Not A Crime

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#1011819 - 07/16/19 09:42 AM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: _WW_]
avidangler Offline
Three Time Spawner

Registered: 04/04/13
Posts: 1982
Loc: Monterey CA
Any update on the slide?
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#1011824 - 07/16/19 09:51 AM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: avidangler]
JustBecause Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 07/18/08
Posts: 197
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safet...dslide-incident

There are some nice pics down on the page a bit. They really put the scale of the river and this slide in perspective. I was doing some back-of-the-napkin calcs on the flow in this area - there are no gauges in the vicinity so split the difference between the upstream and downstream readings.. Looks to be about equal to the Columbia when is crosses back into the U.S. North of the Colville area. Something around 80-90K cfs!

That's going to make any in-water work pretty darn dangerous or impossible until is goes down a bit.


Edited by JustBecause (07/16/19 09:57 AM)

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#1011833 - 07/16/19 12:36 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: JustBecause]
NOFISH Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 2961
Loc: Olalla, WA
Looks like Mother Nature being Mother Nature.....but the humans will fix it!
_________________________
Does anyone know where the love of God goes when the waves turn the minutes to hours......Gordon Lightfoot

Damn Stam!
Remember, Ask yourself "What would Stam do?" smile

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#1011840 - 07/16/19 06:35 PM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
eldplanko Offline
Fry

Registered: 06/27/12
Posts: 31
A geoengineers wet dream, Save the whales!

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#1012060 - 07/23/19 09:38 AM Re: Slide blocks Fraser River [Re: bushbear]
bushbear Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 4608
Loc: Sequim
They're starting to move fish upstream of the Big Bar rock slide area


https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/can...mp;ocid=U506DHP

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