ITEM:

INFORMATIONAL ITEMS/STAFF REPORTS

 

16.

CARMEL RIVER FISHERY REPORT

 

Meeting Date:

November 15, 2004

Budgeted:

N/A

 

From:

David A. Berger,

Program/

N/A

 

General Manager

Line Item No.:

 

 

 

Prepared By:

 

Beverly Chaney/Dave Dettman

Cost Estimate:

N/A

 

General Counsel Approval:N/A

Committee Recommendation:N/A

CEQA Compliance:N/A

 

AQUATIC HABITAT AND FLOW CONDITIONS:During October 2004, Carmel River streamflow conditions were poor to good for juvenile steelhead rearing.By the end of August, the river had dried up approximately to California-American Waterís (Cal-Amís) Begonia Well (River Mile [RM] 7.8). But by mid-September, cooler weather and the decrease in riparian vegetation evapotranspiration, coupled with the reduction in Cal-Amís pumping in the mid-valley reach combined to let the river front slowly advance downstream approximately 1/4 mile.Unusually heavy October rains and the resultant runoff allowed the river to advance to the All Saints project area, near Cal-Amís Schulte Well (River Mile [RM] 6.5).The October mean daily streamflow recorded at the Districtís Carmel River Sleepy Hollow Weir gaging station averaged 8.7 cubic feet per second (cfs) and ranged from 5.5 to 17 cfs.

 

In October 2004, 4.12 inches of rainfall were recorded by Cal-Am at San Clemente Dam (SCD); nearly six times the long term October average of 0.71 inches at this site. This is the highest October total since recording began at this site in 1922.

 

CARMEL RIVER LAGOON:The Carmel River Lagoon was closed throughout October with the water surface elevation ranging from 3.4 feet to 6.1 feet above sea level, as shown below.

Carmel River Lagoon Water Surface Elevation (feet NGVD) Ė October 2004

JUVENILE STEELHEAD POPULATION SURVEY:During October 2004, Staff completed the annual steelhead population surveys at 11 of 13 sites.The Los Compadres site, downstream of Pine Creek, will be surveyed in early November after the access road dries out.The Red Rock site will not be surveyed this year since the fish were rescued last summer before the reach dried up.

 

SLEEPY HOLLOW FISH REARING FACILITY:Staff began stocking fish at the Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility on May 11, 2004.Through October 31, 2004, a total of 16,137 fish have been stocked, including 15,481 young-of-the-year and 656 yearlings.

 

In mid-October, after heavy rains, 587 fish from four quarantine tanks were released back into the river adjacent to the Facility.Tanks Q1, Q2, and Q3 held the larger, older juvenile fish and had 88%, 64%, 78% survival respectively.Tank Q4 held young-of-year fish from two days of rescues.Although Q4 had low mortalities from disease, 42% of the 596 fish placed in the tank were unaccounted for the day of release, likely due to predation by several larger fish in the tank.At release, 43% of the fish had survived.

 

Overall survival of stocked fish in the rearing channel remains high at 96% with daily-observed mortality now running at or near zero. Most fish are growing rapidly and many are approaching smolt size, approximately 6-8 inches, which is possibly a concern because of their potential to prey on smaller juvenile steelhead in the channel.Any potential effects of this will not be measured until the facility is demobilized in November and December.

 

 

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