The Eel River is the last, best hope for recovery of wild salmon and steelhead in California. But two old, fish-killing dams on the Eel block access to over 200 miles of high-quality spawning and nursery habitat in the headwaters and, a major factor in the decline of anadromous fishes in California’s third largest watershed.
At one time, California’s Eel River once had incredibly abundant salmon, steelhead, and Pacific lamprey fisheries. But dams, major water diversions, legacy impacts from clearcut logging, and illegal cannabis cultivation have compromised the Eel’s productivity for salmonids and lamprey.
There is real hope for restoring the Klamath River and its fisheries, however. That’s because a multi-decade effort to remove the four dams of the Lower Klamath Project—in which Trout Unlimited has played a major role—is now close to the finish line.
Wild Steelheaders United and Trout Unlimited and our allies are tracking and working on several bills and budget actions that could affect wild steelhead management in the Golden State.
Our restoration leader on California’s Central Coast takes his steelheading, and steelhead conservation, very seriously.
Part 3 of Life after dams: The Klamath River, straddling the border between California and Oregon, is the third most productive watershed for salmon and steelhead on the West Coast. The Klamath is also Ground Zero for one of the most challenging water conflicts in U.S. history.
Pete Xander, a southern California resident, negotiated a permit for the expansion of a sewage treatment plant on upper Malibu Creek and prevented extinction of the southern steelhead.
A longtime landowner’s love of his rural California land and the tiny steelhead stream that flows through it is key to the success of a challenging TU-led fish passage project Bruce Dormody was born and raised on a secluded, 2600-acre property in the hills above Carmel Valley, California, operated for decades as San Clemente Rancho, a private recreational retreat on …
We’ve all heard stories from our grandparents of unbelievable abundance and sizes in their fishing forays — the salmon so numerous it boggled the mind, and those Lahontan cutthroat trout so big you couldn’t wrap your arms around them. Yet even with these anecdotes it’s still hard to internalize just how different our experience of today is from way back when. That’s just human nature: memory is hard to maintain, especially across generations.
Trout Unlimited lauded the Memorandum of Agreement released today by the states of California and Oregon, the Yurok and Karuk Tribes, PacifiCorp (a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Energy), and Klamath River Renewal Corporation. With the agreement, the two states and Berkshire Hathaway-owned PacifiCorp agreed to provide additional resources and support for dam removal through the Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement. See TU’s press release here.