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Thursday, April 20, 2017

South Yuba River Citizens League ~ Lower Yuba River Restoration Projects

I could not attend SYRCL's "State of the Yuba" address last night but would like to share a map of their upcoming projects on the Lower Yuba River. With Spring-run Chinook salmon hovering on the brink of extinction and fall-run salmon fairing no better, the time to act is now. Last year, critically low numbers of migrating salmon were recorded. As few as 148 Spring-run salmon were counted as of August 2016. SYRCL is working on an action plan to restore critical habitat on the lower Yuba this year which will be revealed at the State of the Yuba. 

River Science Director Rachel Hutchinson says, “SYRCL is excited to be working collaboratively with agencies and local non-profits to produce a plan that will allow us to take action and improve conditions for fish now. We are working with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and groups like the Gold Country Fly Fishers to help save these key species and their habitat.” SYRCL and partners are focused on salmon and steelhead restoration because they are indicators of river health, from the headwaters to the ocean. When a watershed is able to support strong salmon and steelhead populations, the entire river ecosystem can thrive.

As you can see with the map and the key symbols above, there is going to be some very beneficial work to completed that include proper measures to improve riparian habitat, lowering of the floodplain, side channel formation, large woody debris (lots of that around after our two 80k events!), interpretive signage, and additional spawning gravel.

I'm excited to see the changes the projects will make. There is plenty that you can do by volunteering for SYRCL and making a difference for the Lower Yuba River, and being a part of our community.

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