BPA Fish and Wildlife FY 1997 Proposal

Section 1. Administrative
Section 2. Narrative
Section 3. Budget

see CBFWA and BPA funding recommendations

Section 1. Administrative

Title of project
Sandy Watershed Restoration and Effectiveness Monitoring Program

BPA project number   5508300

Business name of agency, institution or organization requesting funding
Wolftree, Inc.

Sponsor type   OR-Consultant

Proposal contact person or principal investigator
 NameDale R. Waddell
 Mailing addressWolftree, Inc.
3735 SE Clay
Portland, OR 97214
 Phone503/631-3988

BPA technical contact   , EWP

Biological opinion ID   Section 7.7 of F&W Program

NWPPC Program number   

Short description
The purpose of the Sandy River Restoration and Effectiveness Monitoring Project is to restore approximately 30 miles of critical habitat for several Salmonid Species on the Salmon and Sandy River systems (Upper Sandy River Watershed). The proposed restoration project will be guided by information from the recently completed Watershed Analysis and site specific planning conducted by biologists working in the Region. The project will focus on reopening several side channels, improve riparian habitat on private land that was damaged during past development, and to improve fish passage on several tributaries accessing the main channel of the Salmon River. An “effectiveness monitoring program” will be conducted to help biologists evaluate the success of the restoration efforts. Because of the recent wind and flood activities, there are large quantities of new woody debris scattered throughout the upper watershed. There is an excellent opportunity to use this readily available materials to restore natural habitat within the main channels of the Sandy and Salmon Rivers and in the adjacent tributaries.

Project start year   1995    End year   2001

Start of operation and/or maintenance   0

Project development phase   Implementation

Section 2. Narrative

Related projects

Project history
· Watershed Analysis was completed by the US Forest Service in 1995.

· Planning and mapping of critical habitat areas in the Sandy River Watershed will be completed in May of 1996 as cooperative effort by the US Forest Service, BLM , ODF&W, Wolftree, and private citizens in the Hoodland area (private landowners) {Wolftree staff were paid through general memberships}

· Public outreach was initiated by Wolftree, Inc. in October of 1995 through our Mount Hood RiverKeeper office. Full support for our restoration, monitoring, and education programs have come from private industry, local businesses, conservation organizations (Trout Unlimited, Northwest Steelheaders, Defenders of Wildlife, and others), business organizations (Chamber of Commerce), and residents of the area. {Funding for these organizational activities has been from corporate sponsors such as The Resort at the Mountain, Timberline Lodge, Mount Hood Village (Grayco), AT&T, and others: $10,000}

· Small scale restoration activities were completed in the Fall of 1995 on the Salmon River. About ½ mile of side channels were opened with monitoring activities scheduled to begin in March of 1996. {Funding for this project was from a single corporate contributor $1,000}

· Several preliminary presentations have made to a wide variety of audiences throughout the last six months with an emphasis on our approach to gaining community support for watershed restoration (ODF&W commission, METRO, PGE Executive Board, Director of the Bureau of Land Management, The Chief of the Forest Service, etc.).

Biological results achieved
· Our restoration activities are very recent, but several spawning Coho Salmon have been observed in our newly opened side channel.

Annual reports and technical papers

Management implications
· Because much of the land adjacent to the Sandy and Salmon River is on private property, it is important to organize a restoration, research, and education program through the local communities. Wolftree’s RiverKeeper and Cascade Streamwatch Education Programs have united both the public and private sectors around issues of science education, habitat restoration and wildlife conservation. As a result, biologists from the Federal and State Agencies are working directly with landowners, environmental groups, and private corporations in an effort to achieve the same goals: improve habitat for fish & wildlife, provide local stewardship of natural resources, and enhance opportunities for research and education.

· Wolftree’s program in the first year of operations was recognized by the Chief of the Forest Service, the Director of the BLM, and the Governor of Oregon, as a model for community development around watershed restoration, conservation, and education. Positive public and media relations (Channel 2,6, & 8 and the Oregonian) have generated strong interest in the project from a wide diversity of organizations. This support has created a positive environment for continued growth and development within the project.

Specific measureable objectives
(1) Several miles (approximately 30 miles) of habitat adjacent to and within streams located on private lands will be restored with the placement of in-stream structures (logs, boulders, gravel, etc.) and the planting of vegetation to rehabilitate critical riparian habitat. The restoration will be under the direction of local fishery biologists from the US Forest Service, the BLM, the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Many of the leading biologists in the watershed serve on Wolftree’s Board of Directors, Advisory Board, or as volunteer instructors ).

(2) In close proximity to restoration sites, permanent effectiveness monitoring stations will be installed prior to and following the restoration activities (several years) to measure changes in the quality of habitat. Although some of the monitoring stations will be for the purpose of education, specific stations will be designed for only research applications (in conjunction with statistically valid measurement and sampling protocols for effectiveness monitoring techniques). In cooperation with fishery biologists from the Mount Hood National Forest and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, inventories of fish and wildlife species will occur periodically for several years following restoration.

(3) Data will be compiled and made available through our local Wolftree Server, our World Wide Web site, and through our government partners. Analysis of data will be completed and distributed to local fishery biologists and other interested organizations or individuals.

Testable hypothesis
Generally not applicable for habitat restoration, however, unique hypotheses will be generated for each effectiveness monitoring station (i.e. Habitat manipulation of riparian sites lowers mean temperatures, increases invertebrate diversity significantly, etc.)

Underlying assumptions or critical constraints
A critical assumption is that there will be continued support for watershed rehabilitation at the Federal and State level. Our progress in the early stages of the project has been made possible by the efforts of the entire community which includes both the federal and state government contributors. Although our current funding relies mostly on private contributions, the restoration activities of our federal and state partners are critically important on the public lands within the watershed.

Methods
· Fishery biologists have identified and mapped critical habitat in the watershed.
· Landowners are now being contacted by Wolftree’s Community RiverKeeper. A one-on-one informal presentation will be made on the ecological issues facing the area and how they as landowners fit into the overall restoration plan.
· Another meeting (small discussions and workshops) is then arranged with a wildlife\fish biologist and the private landowners.
· A plan of action is agreed upon for each area and a “needs analysis is performed”.
· A contract is setup for the appropriate equipment operator and materials (trees, rock, gravel, etc.)
· A permit is applied for through ODF&W (STEP program).
· Volunteers are recruited and the date for restoration is set.
· A monitoring team from Wolftree visits the site prior to restoration and establishes an effectiveness monitoring station if appropriate. The type and frequency of sampling protocols are determined. A schedule of monitoring times are established and watershed stewards are assigned to coordinate the implementation prior to and following the restoration.
· Data from the monitoring is collected and compiled by Wolftree staff and reviewed by our statistician on our Board of Directors. Analysis of the data is on-going as collected.

Equipment:
Wolftree publishes a 120 page guide and curriculum that lists all the equipment and procedures required to conduct aquatic monitoring (Available upon request).

Brief schedule of activities
January 1996 - June 1996: Public Outreach and the formation of community working groups in areas targeted for restoration (There are two working groups already formed in the Welches community thus far).

March 1996 - December 1996: Effectiveness Monitoring Stations will be set up and data collection will begin.

July 1996 - October 1996: Level 1: Small scale restoration projects will begin in several areas throughout the Watershed.

November 1996 - March 1997: Evaluation of projects and continued public outreach (BPA ’97)

March 1997 - October 1997: Level 2: Larger scale restoration on the main channels of the Salmon, Sandy, and several tributaries. (BPA ’97)

November 1997 - March 1998: Evaluation of the monitoring data (Compilation & Analysis) (BPA ’98)

January 1998: Draft report on the effectiveness of the restoration projects

March 1998 - October 1998: Level 2: Continued restoration & Monitoring

March 1999 - October 1999: Level 2: Continued restoration & Monitoring (BPA ’99)

Pattern Continues through 2,001

Biological need
Biologists have identified the upper reaches of the Sandy Watershed has having one of the greatest potentials for recovering highly productive spawning habitat. Unlike much of the Columbia River System, the entire Sandy River Basin has no major industry and there are few obstacles (dams) to the migration of wild fish. The main limiting factor to restoring populations of fish remains the effects of channelization on habitat. Improvements in the quantity of graveled spawning sites, protected habitat for rearing of resident trout and juvenile anadromous fish, and the increase in the total biomass of the food chain will lead to restoration of populations of native fish and other wildlife.

The Project has both national and regional significance. No single element of the Pacific Northwest landscape is more critical to the region’s economic prosperity than the Columbia River and its vast watershed — an area larger than France. Commercial and recreational fishing is not only an industry, but also a culture along the Columbia and its tributaries (Salmon River). Over a million Americans live and recreate in this enormous watershed.

A century ago, between 10 million and 16 million salmon returned to the Columbia each year. Today less than 2.5 million salmon return, many of these to hatcheries. Cuts in the federal budget will reduce hatchery production in the local rivers by 78%, further reducing the total numbers of fish in the rivers (Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, Columbia Region, September, 1995). The Endangered Species Act protects some wild salmon and could force major changes in the way the Columbia River is managed. Political experts believe that the debate over saving the wild salmon promises to dwarf the battles over the northern spotted owl.

Organizers involved in the planning and management of the restoration effort consider this project as a regional model that has already generated intense public interest and support from a number of private and public organizations ... successful results in the Sandy Watershed will leverage greater funding opportunities for future projects throughout the region.

Critical uncertainties
Downstream impacts (fishing, pollution, hatchery fish, etc.) including the ocean environment may overwhelm the positive returns expected in the restoration of the habitat.

Summary of expected outcome
By the year 2001, the Sandy River Watershed will have over 30 miles of premium habitat for rearing and protecting wild fish while providing biodiversity for a multitude of wildlife species. In addition, there will be high quality information about the effects of the restoration as it pertains to water quality and the diversity/number of species that utilize the new habitat. As equally important, is the positive impact this project will have on community development … local ownership and stewardship of our natural heritage.

Dependencies/opportunities for cooperation
A strong partnership has been forged with the U.S. Forest Service, the BLM, and ODF&W. Their combined technical expertise and access to resources is essential to the success of Wolftree’s activities on private lands.

Wolftree has received endorsements form the Hoodland Chamber of Commerce, Sandy Chamber of Commerce, the Clackamas County Tourism Board, the Oregon Commission Fish & Wildlife, all of the major fishing organizations (local and national) and several private businesses in the Mount Hood Region.

Wolftree has received funding from over 30 corporations supporting our science education and ecosystem restoration programs.

Risks
Ž ODF&W approval for permits to engage in restoration during times when volunteers and resources are available. The state biologists are fully endorsing our program along with the Governor’s office.

Ž Consistent growth in funding from the private sector … Wolftree memberships and directed private contributions will need to be high so that we can pursue public outreach and education during the course of the restoration efforts. Recently, the program has received new support from the entertainment industry and from large national environmental organizations.

Monitoring activity
Effectiveness monitoring is intrinsic to our overall program. Currently, we collect data throughout the year and supervise over 100 volunteers trained in effectiveness monitoring data collection. As restoration activities spread throughout the watershed, permanent monitoring station will be created in appropriate locations. In March of 1996, we will train another 60 people in data collection procedures. Long-term monitoring will continue as we tie these stations to educational opportunities as well as corporate sponsorship programs (i.e. “Adopt a stream” promotions).

Section 3. Budget

Data shown are the total of expense and capital obligations by fiscal year. Obligations for any given year may not equal actual expenditures or accruals within the year, due to carryover, pre-funding, capitalization and difference between operating year and BPA fiscal year.

Historic costsFY 1996 budget data*Current and future funding needs
(none) New project - no FY96 data available 1997: 100,000
1998: 100,000
1999: 50,000
2000: 50,000
2001: 50,000

* For most projects, Authorized is the amount recommended by CBFWA and the Council. Planned is amount currently allocated. Contracted is the amount obligated to date of printout.

Funding recommendations

CBFWA funding review group   Below Bonneville Dam

Recommendation    Tier 2 - fund when funds available

Recommended funding level   $100,000