Project aims to enhance habitat, fish passage
Blue Mountain Eagle | August 9, 2011
MITCHELL – Crews recently replaced a rusty, ineffective culvert with a fish-friendly bridge over Bridge Creek, near the entrance to the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument’s Painted Hills Unit.
The bridge is one of several improvement projects under way along Bridge Creek.
The Wheeler County Soil and Water Conservation District is coordinating the projects, which are intended to benefit fish habitat and also private lands. Partners include the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Bonneville Power Administration, and local landowners.
Officials said the old culvert and irrigation diversions had prevented salmon and steelhead from reaching parts of the creek they once commonly traveled. With the new culvert and other improvements such as fish ladders and state-of-the-art irrigation diversions, the fish will be able to find their way back into rich spawning grounds of upper Bridge Creek.
BPA has produced a video about the project. To view it, visit www.MyEagleNews.com.