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
Lower Wilson Creek Riparian Restoration

BPA project number   9603502

Business name of agency, institution or organization requesting funding
Yakama Indian Nation

Sponsor type   WA-Tribe

Proposal contact person or principal investigator
 NameLynn Hatcher
 Mailing addressP.O. Box 151
Toppenish, WA 98948
 Phone509/865-6262

BPA technical contact   ,

Biological opinion ID   

NWPPC Program number   

Short description
This project would promote voluntary restoration of riparian habitat on private agricultural and residential land. From the mouth to the headwaters (CM 30.6) Wilson Creek is listed as an impaired water body, with high levels of sediment, fecal coliform, DDT, 4,4'DDE and Dieldrin. Summer maximum temperatures are also elevated. The Yakima River, the receiving water for Wilson Creek, is also listed as an impaired water body beginning at the mouth of Wilson Creek. Channel morphology has also been altered due to agricultural practices. The channel has been straightened in some places, and woody debris has been removed by landowners in the name of “stream maintenance”. Irrigation diversions, which are often dredged, form upstream migration barriers for juvenile fish. The NPS pollution problems that characterize Wilson Creek have developed from a misunderstanding of stream functions, values, and appropriate riparian management. Most farmers and ranchers in the area believe that the creeks have always been in their present condition, or that remedial actions would be expensive and difficult to maintain. Many believe that a choice must be made between fish and viable agriculture. Thus migration barriers are not seen as problems, and removing structural complexity by pulling out woody debris or channelizing the stream is viewed as beneficial.

Project start year   1997    End year   2000

Start of operation and/or maintenance   0

Project development phase   Implementation

Section 2. Narrative

Related projects

Project history

Biological results achieved

Annual reports and technical papers

Management implications

Specific measureable objectives
Fish density will be determined pre- and post-project implementation throughout season of use. Change in riparian canopy closure will also be measured.

Testable hypothesis
Restoring riparian habitat and adding stream complexity will increase rearing productivity.

Underlying assumptions or critical constraints
The hydrograph will be similar to historic; water quality will remain adequate to support anadromous fish during season of use (i.e. discharge of toxic substances to the stream will not occur); a minimum of twenty percent of the landowners in the project area will participate

Methods
Fish density will be determined by mark and recapture methods. Three reaches will be sampled at three different times during the season of use (early fall through late spring). Equipment will include normal fish sampling tools.

Changes in riparian canopy will be determined with a densiometer.

Brief schedule of activities
The project would be initiated with the mailing of fliers to landowners. Public meetings would be held to discuss stream functions, appropriate management and the goals of the project. Past habitat restoration/protection successes that the Yakama Indian Nation has undertaken would be displayed. Landowners along Wilson Creek would be solicited to voluntarily initiate riparian restoration/protection on their land. In-channel structures, such as large woody debris, would be placed at appropriate locations. After restoration projects have been implemented in the first year, monitoring would occur in years two and three. Ultimately, field trips would be scheduled in the Wilson drainage to display individual restoration projects.

Biological need
From past research fish managers know that lower Wilson Creek is utilized by juvenile spring chinook for rearing and over-wintering. However, managers believe rearing function could be improved substantially through restorative measures. It is believed that fish survival is currently poor because escape cover is virtually absent. Managers also believe rearing habitat for juvenile fish is severely limited in the basin. This project would redress rearing habitat function through increasing riparian canopy closure, reducing sedimentation, increasing in-channel habitat complexity and improving water reducing substrate embeddedness.

Critical uncertainties
Rearing habitat for juvenile fish is severely limited in the Yakima Basin, so much so that fish managers believe rearing habitat restoration is one of most important actions to restore stock health.

Summary of expected outcome
Native riparian vegetation density will increase. In turn, water quality will improve, in-channel habitat complexity will increase and stream banks will become more stable. Landowners will become more aware of anadromous fish needs and other reasons for preserving and restoring riparian vegetation. Ultimately, the project will be used as a local demonstration area to encourage additional landowners to protect and restore streams.

Dependencies/opportunities for cooperation
Individual restoration projects will be developed in consultation with the USDA - NRCS and the WDOE. Cost-share applications will be presented to the USDA - CFSA, the WDNR, the USFWS, and other agencies that administer funding programs. Hydraulics Permit Applications (HPA’s) will be required for all in-channel work requiring heavy equipment. These will be processed two months prior to anticipated work. Invasive weedy species may out-compete native plantings. Flooding may remove large woody debris.

Risks
Invasive weedy species may out-compete native plantings. Flooding may remove large woody debris.

Monitoring activity
Monitoring of revegetation success will be done for three years. Weed control and replanting will be done as necessary.

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: 200,928
1998: 4,809
1999: 4,809

* 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   Bonneville Dam - Priest Rapids Dam

Recommendation    Tier 2 - fund when funds available

Recommended funding level   $200,928