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#990180 - 06/11/18 08:54 AM Another Step Backward
Great Bender Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 01/03/17
Posts: 135
Loc: Hood Canal

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#990182 - 06/11/18 09:13 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
FishBear Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 11/06/05
Posts: 401
Loc: Western Washington
A huge step forward... possibly, just possibly this will lead to a slowing down of habitat loss... and hope for a point in the future when we can actually turn the tide and begin to reverse the trend.
_________________________
You're welcome America!

George W. Bush

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#990183 - 06/11/18 09:31 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: FishBear]
Sky-Guy Offline
The Tide is Changing

Registered: 08/31/00
Posts: 7128
Loc: Everett
Originally Posted By: FishBear
A huge step forward... possibly, just possibly this will lead to a slowing down of habitat loss... and hope for a point in the future when we can actually turn the tide and begin to reverse the trend.


+1 this lawsuit was DOA to begin with....
_________________________
You know something bad is going to happen when you hear..."Hey, hold my beer and watch this"

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#990187 - 06/11/18 11:23 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
While I agree that the culverts must be fixed there are few arguments that I wish the Supremes would have answered.

The state has to fix culverts upstream of existing barriers. It is simply a waste of money to fix passage is system without the fish to use it. Start at the bottom and work upstream.

Culverts are "easy". Dams have destroyed more salmon habitat than a culvert ever hoped to, as has building in floodplains, building levees, and so on. If the Tribes' have a right to fish produced by the habitat as it existed in pre-treaty times, is there a limit?

This case, or something like it, will be back in the courts.

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#990194 - 06/11/18 03:20 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
milkBottleMikey Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 473
Loc: Spawn Ranch
What about culverts on "private" timberlands? Improvements above existing barriers does seem like wasted resources.

It also seems to me that only certain culverts are a barrier, I've seen plenty of salmon spawning above culverts.
_________________________
Illegitimi non carborundum

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#990204 - 06/11/18 07:32 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
NickD90 Offline
Shooting Instructor for hire

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 4693
Loc: Snohomish, WA
Chicken or egg? It doesn't matter to me. Either in hand is more than neither in hand, so any step forward is a good thing IMO.

Think of it this way, maybe leverage the culvert work and spend into getting some barriers down? That's what I'd do.
_________________________
“If the military were fighting for our freedom, they would be storming Capitol Hill”. – FleaFlickr02

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#990206 - 06/11/18 09:11 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Part of the Federal and Tribal defense was that the damage done by the culverts was quantifiable. You could demonstrate loss. Good. I'll believe that they are really interested in restoration of anadromous fish hen they go after the hydrosystem.

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#990208 - 06/11/18 10:26 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Carcassman]
Tug 3 Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 03/06/14
Posts: 109
Right on Carcassman. More stupidity by the folks who "managed" our fisheries, because nearly all of these stream blockages were permitted by WDFW, (or WDF or WDG in the old days). The statutes were very clear. so someone either didn't do their job, or employees were over ruled by their respective administrators. Permits were supposedly written by "experts". I know that when I was in the field several of the HPA permit writers told the hiway construction crews not to worry about permits for many of the smaller streams. What the hell, this only contributed to the lawsuit that will cost a couple billion bucks! Sure wish we had a fraction of the several billion $ settlement in order to get rid of seals, sea lions and cormorants.

Couple this with the criminally effective gillnets in Columbia River tributaries program in the late 70's/early 80's to harvest predicted surplus hatchery stocks returning to hatchery streams that helped wipe out our wild fish. And on the insanity still goes.....

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#990217 - 06/12/18 05:30 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Great Bender Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 01/03/17
Posts: 135
Loc: Hood Canal
Tug--No one could have said it any better...G

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#990219 - 06/12/18 06:49 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Well, yeah Tug. It was also all about Chrome Cod (salmon). Talked to HPA folks about barriers to sculpins; a 6" barrier can extirpate them above it. Nope, salmon can get over that.

Had a couple of other situations where I was told the local political apparatus was powerful enough. Since the streams were small, the numbers not huge (another issue), it was not worth fighting.

In each of these situations we had actual data such as spawner surveys, electrofishing, and trap data to know what the barrier was doing.

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#990224 - 06/12/18 09:34 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Myassisdragon Online   content
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 07/07/14
Posts: 1119
Loc: The Wet Side
Sculpins are gravel divers, and live in the rocks. Not surprising that they dislike swimming upstream thru culverts. They fare way better going downstream. Salmon and Steelhead, tend to be a bit more mobil in thier ability to move up and then back down into the river system...
_________________________
Hmmm

- "Wild steelhead were more numerous this year than they were in the 1970s" ( ITYOOL - 2015 )

- "It's past the time to "play nice", after all, they are pooching us royally."

D'uh!

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#990226 - 06/12/18 10:40 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Some species of sculpins, certainly here on the Pacific Coast, travel downstream to spawn and then go back upstream to live the rest of the year. It only takes a few years operation of a barrier to extirpate the population above it. This was first observed on Waddell Creek in CA in the 30s and seems to be continuously confirmed up here.

In one of the cases I was involved in, we knew that both coho and steelhead juveniles occasionally went upstream through a barrier culvert. It was access to great overwinter habitat. But, WDF was uninterested in having DOT fix it. In fact, DOT actually fixed it "accidentally" as they made a very passable situation that WDF was not going to force.

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#990234 - 06/12/18 01:04 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Salmo g. Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/08/99
Posts: 12509
I have mixed feelings about the SCOTUS decision (to leave in place the 9th Circuit decision). Don't get me wrong, I do favor restoring fish habitat. However, not all habitat restoration measures are the same. Not the same in terms of fish species affected. Not the same in the quantity of fish productivity restored. And not the same in terms of quantity of fish productivity restored per dollar, or million dollars spent. And that really bothers me. A billion or two dollars now must be spent under federal court order to restore habitat that in many cases will result in less increase in fish productivity than if that money were spent on more beneficial restoration measures.

The selection of culverts for a habitat court case was strategic. The case area treaty tribes figured that, compared to habitat loss due to urbanization, roads, agriculture, forestry, mining, and hydropower, stream miles of anadromous fish habitat loss due to culvert blockages is the most easily and readily quantified. Easily quantified means even a federal judge who knows nothing about habitat productivity can add and subtract stream miles. Ergo, the now famous culvert case.

In news releases yesterday, Lorraine Loomis, chair of the NW Indian Fisheries Commission is quoted as saying that these culvert fixes will result in hundreds of thousands more salmon available for treaty and non-treaty harvest. That sounds nice, impressive even. Unfortunately it is also nonsense, no offense to Ms. Loomis intended since she is just repeating what someone told her.

According to case notes, there are about 1,000 culverts blocking access to about 1,600 miles of usable habitat. Most of the culverted streams have no more than 2 meters of low summer stream flow width that would provide a rough total of 5,632,000 square meters of salmon habitat that could, emphasis on COULD, produce about 2,816,000 coho smolts, IF, and only IF, that habitat is pretty good quality and less than about 1 or 2% at most, stream gradient. Habitat greater than 4% gradient rapidly approaches zero in terms of coho productivity. So if this habitat is prime coho habitat, it could produce 112,640 additional adult coho, about 40% of which will be needed for spawning escapement, given today's general condition of degraded habitat. And all of this habitat is degraded, or else there wouldn't be a culvert there.

This same 1,600 miles would produce less than one Chinook salmon redd per mile, since these are small streams that are typically not favored by Chinook because of their very small size in late summer, early fall when Chinook spawn. These days, PS Chinook can barely replace themselves, so we would be lucky to see an additional 1,600 Chinook in the case area.

Not to stretch this out too long, but the upshot is that under the very best case scenario, the increased salmon production that could result from fixing or replacing every single one of these culverts is quite small, and certainly less than " . . . hundreds of thousands . . ." of HARVESTABLE salmon and steelhead. And I'll add that evidence of that probable outcome is already known to WDFW and the treaty tribes, since they do NOT plan to increase spawning escapement goals by even one single fish, let alone the additional thousands of spawners that would be necessary to produce these many hundreds of thousands of addtional harvestable fish.

Sg

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#990243 - 06/12/18 02:34 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Thanks for saying that Salmo. I oversaw a culvert replacement that opened 10 miles of (primarily chum) habitat. Low gradient, so what coho are in there would do well. Close to 100% chum block. WDFW would like to LOWER the whole watershed goal.

Culverts were chosen, I believe, because as Salmo says they were easily quantifiable and the fix takes little away from anybody. Stream still flows down the channel, road still crosses it, and so on. Nobody loses, except the taxpayer who foots the bill for the few real actual fish added.

Makes good talking points, though.

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#990248 - 06/12/18 03:55 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
wsu Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 06/23/04
Posts: 397
Salmo - The problem with disagreeing that the money could be better spent elsewhere is that the state appeared to have no intention of meaningfully addressing habitat. They weren't going to fix culverts, dams, land use, logging or any other million problems. Perhaps the dollars could be better spent, but at least the state has to meaningfully address the issue.

Maybe we can reinstate the head tax to pay for all this.

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#990250 - 06/12/18 04:34 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Unless the State and Tribes (and the rest of society) are willing to address human population the decision is moot, anyway. More people will move in, people will reproduce, more resources will be needed to support them, fish lose.

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#990251 - 06/12/18 04:58 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Carcassman]
Myassisdragon Online   content
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 07/07/14
Posts: 1119
Loc: The Wet Side
Originally Posted By: Carcassman
Unless the State and Tribes (and the rest of society) are willing to address human population the decision is moot, anyway. More people will move in, people will reproduce, more resources will be needed to support them, fish lose.


They do lose unless, one or more of those new humans ends up being the ones that actually sees thru all this fogged up crap, and gets us all pulling on the same oar that turns this around and fish start winning a few ......
_________________________
Hmmm

- "Wild steelhead were more numerous this year than they were in the 1970s" ( ITYOOL - 2015 )

- "It's past the time to "play nice", after all, they are pooching us royally."

D'uh!

Top
#990258 - 06/13/18 06:13 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Tug 3]
RUNnGUN Offline
Spawner

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 894
Originally Posted By: Tug 3
Right on Carcassman. More stupidity by the folks who "managed" our fisheries, because nearly all of these stream blockages were permitted by WDFW, (or WDF or WDG in the old days). The statutes were very clear. so someone either didn't do their job, or employees were over ruled by their respective administrators. Permits were supposedly written by "experts". I know that when I was in the field several of the HPA permit writers told the hiway construction crews not to worry about permits for many of the smaller streams. What the hell, this only contributed to the lawsuit that will cost a couple billion bucks! Sure wish we had a fraction of the several billion $ settlement in order to get rid of seals, sea lions and cormorants.

Couple this with the criminally effective gillnets in Columbia River tributaries program in the late 70's/early 80's to harvest predicted surplus hatchery stocks returning to hatchery streams that helped wipe out our wild fish. And on the insanity still goes.....


To bad those HPA permit writers that made those decisions to bypass standards, can't be held accountable today for their irresponsible actions. Would set examples for future illegal actions.
_________________________
"After fishing for Steelhead for over 40 years, Steelheading as I know it is gone in Puget Sound!"
ME

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#990260 - 06/13/18 06:38 AM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Great Bender]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 5432
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
In all likelihood it was the permit writer, it was further up the Food Chain. I knew many who found themselves on the "wrong" side of Admin because they placed the law and the fish first. As in war, it the grunt who is killed for the General's decision.

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#990287 - 06/13/18 05:00 PM Re: Another Step Backward [Re: Carcassman]
RUNnGUN Offline
Spawner

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 894
Originally Posted By: Carcassman
In all likelihood it was the permit writer, it was further up the Food Chain. I knew many who found themselves on the "wrong" side of Admin because they placed the law and the fish first. As in war, it the grunt who is killed for the General's decision.


Understandable. Whistles can still be blown loudly! Generals are not immune from expulsion/prosecution. To many city, county and state elected officials and public employees in high places, seem to get free immunity after their gone, after making terrible unconscionable and illegal decisions while employed or in office. The taxpayer left to hold the bag. Actions would change quick if they were held accountable even after their gone.
_________________________
"After fishing for Steelhead for over 40 years, Steelheading as I know it is gone in Puget Sound!"
ME

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