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
Listed Stock Adult Escapement Monitoring

BPA project number   5520800

Business name of agency, institution or organization requesting funding
Nez Perce Tribe

Sponsor type   ID-Tribe

Proposal contact person or principal investigator

 NamePaul A. Kucera
 Mailing addressNez Perce Tribe
P.O. Box 365
Lapwai, ID 83540

BPA technical contact   ,

Biological opinion ID   Section 10

NWPPC Program number   3.1D.1, 7.1C

Short description
The Listed Stock Adult Escapement Monitoring project is an investigation that began in 1991 on the Secesh River, Idaho. Conceptual and preliminary engineering designs have been completed (Fish Management Consultants 1991, River Masters Engineering 1994) on an adult summer chinook salmon fish counting facility that incorporates underwater video for escapement monitoring purposes. This project would allow accurate adult escapement monitoring, with a temporary facility, on an unsupplemented chinook population on the Secesh River and Lake Creek.

Project start year   1997    End year   

Start of operation and/or maintenance   1997

Project development phase   Planning

Section 2. Narrative

Related projects
This project is currently partially funded through seed money from Pacific Salmon Treaty funding and would cost-share with that project. A temporary fish counting facility is slated for installation in the Secesh River in the summer of 1996. Coordination will also occur with Idaho Supplementation Studies (ISS) as the Secesh River is a control stream for that investigation. ISS studies will further complement this investigation as they have a outmigration study proposed as part of that study. This project is also related to recommended comprehensive monitoring in the proposed recovery plan.

Project history
This investigation began in 1991 with planning and conceptual engineering design of an adult fish counting facility for the Secesh River funded by the Pacific Salmon Treaty. Preliminary design work followed in 1994. Approximately $125,000 has been invested in the planning process since 1991. The Pacific Salmon Treaty funding was used as seed money to begin the project and Treaty funding is not sufficient to allow full project implementation on the Secesh River and Lake Creek. The Nez Perce Tribe has worked cooperatively with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) in the planning and developmental stages of this project. Project implementation by the Tribe in 1997 and beyond will require additional funding for implementation and monitoring and evaluation

Biological results achieved
None to date

Annual reports and technical papers
Fish Management Consultants. 1991. Feasibility design and location of a weir for escapement estimation of summer chinook salmon in the Secesh River, Idaho. Report prepared for the Nez Perce Tribe. Fish Management Consultants. Olympia, Washington.

River Masters Engineering. 1994. Preliminary design of a non-impeding fish counting facility in the Secesh River for adult summer chinook. Report prepared for the Nez Perce Tribe. River Masters Engineering. Pullman, Washington.

Management implications
The Listed Stock Adult Escapement Monitoring project will provide accurate determination of adult summer chinook escapement into a major unsupplemented summer chinook producing stream; the Secesh River and Lake Creek. Accurate escapement determination will allow managers to monitor the effectiveness of proposed recovery plan actions for stock rebuilding and to evaluate past redd count information. Coordination with the ISS outmigration study will allow information on juvenile salmon production and stock recruitment.

Specific measureable objectives
Accurate determination of listed adult summer chinook salmon spawner abundance (escapement) in the major spawning area in the Secesh River. Determination of listed adult chinook salmon escapement into Lake Creek. Evaluation of accurate adult spawner abundance over time in relation to stock recovery and rebuilding. Identification of adult spawning migration timing into the Secesh River and Lake Creek. Comparison of adult abundance with one-time and multiple ground redd count techniques. Assessment of hatchery straying into the Secesh River and Lake Creek.

Testable hypothesis

Underlying assumptions or critical constraints
Use of underwater video equipment will provide an accurate determination of adult spawner abundance. The first year(s) facility installation will indicate if the counting station can be placed to count the early portion of adult salmon upstream spawning migration. Installation of the fish counting facility will not excessively delay or impede adult salmon upstream migration.

Project planning for the proposed Secesh River fish counting/video facility project has taken into account questions regarding NMFS standards for barrier/trap facilities. The temporary fish counting station would be installed when stream discharge in the upper Secesh River, below Chinook Campground, declines below 400-500 cfs in late June or early July. A second fish counting facility would be installed in lower Lake Creek during the same period. Components of the proposed temporary fish counting facility include tripod-supported upstream guide fences and a video equipped counting chamber. The tripod structures, similar to those in use at the South Fork Salmon River weir, would be weighted down and supported with horizontal braces. A walkway would be installed and supported by horizontal braces and longitudinal supports and cross supports to support walkway grading and hand rails, for maintenance of the structure. The counting fence would be installed at a 45 degree angle across the stream. The counting chamber would be installed in the channel thalweg to encourage adult movement through the chamber and upstream to natal spawning areas. Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) will be in place to determine if adults are being impeded by the fish counting station and sections of the station would be removed if adult upstream movement was impeded.

The temporary fish counting facility would be operated 24 hours a day in a passive manner and maintenance would occur with personnel located on-site or near the site. Project biologists would monitor and evaluate the fish counting facility for impedance of adult upstream movement according to the M&E plan. Video tapes would be replaced at intervals as necessary to ensure that the continuous sampling strategy was employed. No adult summer chinook salmon would be trapped or handled during the conduct of this project. River stage and water temperature would be recorded daily for comparison to adult movement patterns.

Analysis of the video tapes would allow a record of the actual count and timing of movement of adult summer chinook salmon into the Secesh River below Chinook Campground.

The adult summer chinook fish counting facility would be operated and refined to develop accurate baseline escapement information into the Secesh River and Lake Creek. Adult escapement information as determined by this project would be compared to annual redd counting surveys to evaluate the accuracy of those techniques.

Brief schedule of activities
Adult fish counting station facilities would be installed on Secesh River and Lake Creek from mid-June to early July. Coordination and assistance would occur with ISS project for installation and monitoring. Adult counting facilities would be monitored for adult movement, video tape replacement, maintenance and implementation of the M&E plan from mid-June to September 15. Collection of water temperature information would occur through the year at both adult counting facility sites. Discharge information would be collected during adult monitoring periods. Adult counting facilities would be removed in mid to late September. Video tape review would occur during October to December. Data analysis and report preparation would occur from December through June.

Biological need
Accurate determination of adult salmon spawner abundance is important in managing endangered Snake River chinook salmon. Traditional chinook salmon redd count surveys have relied upon one-time counts as an index of relative abundance (trend ) over time in Idaho. These counts have assumed that spawning has been completed, that viewing conditions for aerial surveys were acceptable, and that spawner distribution has remained constant. These surveys did not account for adult salmon straying, pre-spawning mortalities and differences in redd counting techniques. Subsequently this information cannot be used for determination of adult spawner abundance in the Secesh River or Lake Creek.

Implementation of this project would result in collection of abundance-based salmon spawner information over time and will allow comparison to redd count survey data. It will allow managers to determine if recovery actions are, in fact, increasing adult salmon returns to an unsupplemented (control) stream system.

Critical uncertainties
See Underlying Assumptions or Critical Constraints.

Summary of expected outcome
We expect to collect and provide accurate determination of adult summer chinook salmon spawner abundance information in the Secesh River and Lake Creek through use of underwater video technology. These streams are representative of unsupplemented summer chinook salmon populations in the South Fork Salmon River.

Dependencies/opportunities for cooperation
This project is coordinated with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, U.S. Forest Service and Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission. The project is cost shared with Pacific Salmon Treaty and ISS project investigation funding.

See Underlying Assumptions or Critical Constraints section.

Monitoring activity
Annual reports will summarize each individual year's project activities and reports will be available the following year. This project will monitor annual adult summer chinook spawner abundance in the Secesh River and Lake Creek. Water temperatures and stream discharge will be monitored concurrently with adult passage information.

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: 139,669
1998: 115,000
1999: 122,000
2000: 129,000
2001: 136,500

* 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   Snake River

Recommendation    Tier 1 - fund

Recommended funding level   $139,669

BPA 1997 authorized budget (approved start-of-year budget)   $139,700