CEMAR will be bringing its innovative approach for restoration of salmon and steelhead to the Napa Valley with a $25,000 grant from The Dean Witter Foundation. The Napa River is the most important salmon stream in the San Francisco Bay Area. CEMAR will identify stream reaches important for salmon rearing, characterize water use in these reaches, and establish likely locations for streamflow improvement projects.
(Photo: Sotoyome RCD)
Following two years of landowner outreach and field measurements, construction began this summer on the Grape Creek Offstream Storage Project. The project removes the last known direct diversion for frost protection from Grape Creek by replacing a seasonal (or "flashboard") dam with an offstream storage reservoir that uses rainfall and a well for water supply. In addition to support from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the project received funding from three federal agencies (Departments of Commerce, Interior, and Agriculture).
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has contracted with CEMAR to study the hydrology of upper Mark West Creek. Low summer streamflow here may be exacerbated by water diversions by vineyards and homeowners. The study will improve understanding of how and why streamflow recedes each summer and the importance of groundwater pumping as a cause.
A red-legged frog found by crews working on site.
(Photo: VTA BART Silicon Valley)
The removal of two important barriers to salmon and steelhead migration in the Bay Area began this summer using designs developed by CEMAR's Passage Improvement Program (PIP). The City of San Jose is modifying a migration barrier in Upper Penitencia Creek (tributary to Coyote Creek) near the Youth Science Institute in Alum Rock Park. Parks Facility Supervisor Mike McClintock noted that CEMAR's analysis and conceptual designs were "instrumental in making the project happen."
At the downstream end, a hole is drilled to secure
the existing restraining wall. In the foreground
is a drop to be replaced by step-pools.
(Photo: Sandy Guldman, Friends of Corte Madera Creek)
Construction is also underway to modify a culvert on San Anselmo Creek (a tributary to Corte Madera Creek in Marin County) just below Center Boulevard. CEMAR's recommended design modifications include a series of raised baffles and step pools that will slow streamflow and provide improved migrating conditions for fish.
The PIP program identified these barriers as regional priorities for modification in 2009 as they prevent migration on two of the 18 "essential streams" CEMAR identified for steelhead in our region.
For more information, visit CEMAR's website at www.cemar.org or contact Linda Tandle at [email protected] or 510-420-4565 ext. 107.