Meeting Date:

February 26, 2009





Darby Fuerst,




General Manager

Line Item No.:




Prepared By:

Beverly Chaney

Cost Estimate:



General Counsel Approval:  N/A

Committee Recommendation:  N/A

CEQA Compliance:  N/A


AQUATIC HABITAT AND FLOW CONDITIONS:  During January 2009, Carmel River streamflow conditions were poor for all life stages of fish migration, and fair for juvenile fish rearing.  During January, due to the cool weather, the reduced rate of riparian vegetation respiration, and several small storms, the river front continued its slow advance to approximately River Mile (RM) 5.7, near California American Water’s (CAW) Pearce Well.  Los Padres Reservoir filled on January 24, 2009, but only spilled a mean daily flow of from 19-30 cubic feet per second (cfs), mainly through the notch in the dam.  At these flows, the depth of spill on the dam’s spillway is less than 3 inches and is suboptimal for smolt emigration.


During January 2009, the mean daily streamflow recorded at the District’s Carmel River at Sleepy Hollow Weir gaging station averaged 14.4 cfs and ranged from 9 to 35 cfs.  During January 2009, 1.76 inches of rainfall were recorded at CAW’s San Clemente Dam.  The rainfall total for Water Year 2009 through December is 6.28 inches, which is 56% of the long-term average of 11.3 inches for the water year to date.


CARMEL RIVER LAGOON:  During January 2009, the water surface elevation (WSE) in the lagoon ranged from approximately 4.9 to 5.8 feet above mean sea level during the month (see chart below). 



ADULT STEELHEAD COUNT AT SCD:  The fish counter and video camera have been installed at the ladder.  No fish can pass over the counter bay until San Clemente Reservoir spills and the ladder operates properly.


FISH RESCUES:  No fish rescues were needed in January 2009.


SLEEPY HOLLOW STEELHEAD REARING FACILITY:  In December 2008, staff captured and removed 14,721 fish from the rearing channel.  Approximately 11,101 (75%) smaller fish (<150 mm FL) were transported downstream and released in several locations between lower Garland Park (RM 10.8) and CAW’s Manor Well (RM 7.1).


The 3,620 (25%) larger fish (>150 mm FL) were transferred to Tank 3 at the Facility, the 22-foot diameter rearing tank that was retrofitted with a large, recirculating pump and filter assembly in December 2008.  Through January 31, 2009, 3,613 large fish are still being held in Tank 3, pending continuous river flow to the lagoon.


In January 2009, staff pulled both the river pumps for scheduled maintenance and installed the backup pump that has been on-site for several years.  After three days of normal operation, the backup pump’s moisture seal failed and the pump had to be pulled for repair.  Staff anticipates that all three pumps will be back in service by early April 2009.