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Main Canyon Fish Passage Restoration (return to project portal)
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Description of Need for Project:
Two log structures were built in Water Canyon and Birch Creek in the 1930s to prevent the streams from further head-cutting. The structures are large logs vertically stacked on top of each other. The two structures have functioned well in preventing head-cutting , but they are 5 feet and 7 feet high and are preventing native Colorado River cutthroat trout from moving upstream and between streams and reducing genetic interchange. Water Canyon, Birch Creek and Hall Creek all contain remnant populations of native cutthroat trout. The project is on the Dixie National Forest. The Forest has asked UDWR to help complete the in-stream work of constructing step pools and will be supervising the project. The FS will also be replacing two culverts in the drainage.
Eliminate two fish barriers by stepping the stream up to the existing stream elevation above the barriers. This will allow separated populations of Colorado River cutthroat trout to move between each other and exchange genetically.
If project is not implemented then genetic exchange between Colorado cutthroat trout populations may not occur and genetic variability may be lost. If project is implemented the step structures could wash out or the stream could change its channel.
Relation to Management Plans:
The project meets objectives in Conservation Plan for CCT to re-establish meta-populations and genetic exchange and to expand and conserve existing populations.
The Dixie National Forest will contract with a private company to haul large rock and fill material to the site. The FS will also have large (minimum 16 inches diameter) logs delivered the the project site. The FS will also provide a loader at the project site to move rocks and fill material along the stream to where it is needed. The Utah Div. Wildlife Resources Salt Lake heavy equipment crew will rent a 315 excavator and haul it to the project site. They will install rock and log cross-vanes to step up the stream bed. Fill material will be placed between structures to raise the stream bed. Approximately 32 structures will have to be built. The work should take 3 weeks to complete. The project is scheduled to begin June 18 (FY12) and be completed on July 3 (FY13).
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