The Kings Return to the Upper Elwha

It’s an unbelievable sight. There are so few successes of this magnitude. After over 100 years, the Kings are back.  They beat themselves on the dam for decades. Now it’s gone. The Elwha continues to be the environmental restoration story of the last 50 years. I only wish  that Dick Goin was here to see this day. It was part of his vision that brought this about, along with the vision of a small number of other people. It happened due to the work of those people’s visions and many hands, along with  the raw power of nature to heal. Thanks to John Gussman for a superb short film. Thanks to the Lower Elwha Tribe for persevering.  In a week that saw the death of Twyla Roscovitch, the pre-eminent young environmental filmmaker working on salmon restoration issues, leaving behind a grieving partner and young daughter, we see a renewal that the fish themselves give to us all. Not a miracle. The result of immense hard work and the power of nature.

Three Chinook Spotted Above Glines Canyon; First Salmon Return to the Upper Elwha in 102 Years

Amazing! It’s working!

News Release Date: September 12, 2014

Following an observation by a fisheries biologist and member of the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe of a possible Chinook salmon in the former Lake Mills, two Olympic National Park fisheries staff conducted a snorkel survey of the Elwha River above the old Glines Canyon dam site.

https://www.nps.gov/olym/learn/news/three-chinook-spotted-above-glines-canyon.htm

Fish recolonizing areas upriver of former dam sites on Elwha River – PDN

More good news from the Elwha.

Josh Geffre has watched with awe as salmon return to the uppermost reaches of the Elwha River. Geffre, a fisheries technician for Olympic National Park, started monitoring the fish for the park in 2014 and has marveled as he’s seen most species swim upstream of the former Glines Canyon Dam. “It’s very satisfying to know the fish are recolonizing into areas upriver of the former dam sites,” he said during a recent trip to collect data on the fish. “It’s exciting to watch them.” Jesse Major reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

http://www.peninsuladailynews.com/news/fish-recolonizing-areas-upriver-of-former-dam-sites-on-elwha-river/

See also: Elwha fish by the numbers http://www.peninsuladailynews.com/news/elwha-fish-by-the-numbers/ (Peninsula Daily News)

 

Net Pen Application & Public Hearing scheduled for Clallam County

So here we go folks. Your waters, your voice. We have spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to save and restore wild salmon, now we are expected to trade off the known downsides of net pens for our wild salmon. Net pens are disease vectors, they pollute the waters with feces of millions of fish, and the anti-biotics and other drugs that are needed to protect the herded fish from disease. They are a breeding ground for sea lice which then attach themselves to migrating fish from the entire Sound that will passing by the pens. This is an incredibly bad idea that will only profit a small shareholder class and the tiny number of workers employed by them. Is this really what we want? This is your chance to speak out. It’s not happening, “somewhere else.”  This is here in our waters right offshore.

From Peninsula Daily News Classified

Description
NOTICE OF APPLICATION AND PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, pursuant to Section 26.10.410 & 430 CCC, that the Clallam County Department of Community Development has scheduled a public hearing before the Clallam County Hearings Examiner for September 7, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. in Room 160 of the Clallam County Courthouse, 223 East Fourth Street, Port Angeles, WA 98362. The purpose of the hearing is to review public testimony regarding the Shoreline Substantial Permit for the Cooke Aquaculture Pacific LLC (CAP) proposal to move their existing Atlantic salmon net pen operation from within Port Angeles Harbor (Ediz Hook) to an open water area in the Strait of Juan de Fuca that is located over 1.5 miles offshore and 3.8 miles east of terminus of Ediz Hook: Proposal: (SHR 2016-00002) The proposal would be comprised of fourteen (14) floating high density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic pipe circular net pens, which are designed for open water conditions. Each net pen will be 126 feet in diameter, 45 feet deep, and in approximately 100 foot deep water. The proposal also includes a 40 foot wide by 100 foot long feed barge. The height of the feed barge will be approximately 19 feet above the water level when empty and 14 feet when is fully loaded with about 350 tons of fish feed. The pens would be comprised of two rows of 7 pens each with a feed barge at the eastern end of the array. Each of the net pens and the feed barge would be located 72 feet apart from each other, and would be held in place by up to sixty 4,000 to 8,000 mooring anchor, anchor lines, chains, and hardware. This proposal would encompass 9.7 acres of water surface area and require a 52 acre Aquatic lease from the WA State Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Location of the Proposal: The CAP new aquaculture net pen facility is proposed to be located approximately 3.8 miles east of Ediz Hook, 1.8 miles north of Morse Creek, and approximately 1.5 miles north of Green Point, within Section 10, Township 30 North, Range 5 West, W.M. Information & Studies Submitted: A Joint Aquatic Resource Application (JARPA) with attachments, SEPA Environmental Checklist with attachments, Biological Evaluation, Current and Wave Report prepared by RPS Evans-Hamilton, Sediment Report prepared by RPS Evans-Hamilton, Mooring Analysis Report – Grid System prepared by Aqua Knowledge, and Visual Analysis Report (January 2016) were submitted with the application. Permits Required & Studies Submitted: Section 402 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Waste Discharge Permit and Coastal Zone Management Compliance Determination through the Washington Department of Ecology; Fin Fish Aquaculture Permit, Fin Fish Transport Permit, and Aquatic Farm Registration through Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife; Aquatic Use Authorization through DNR; Private Aids to Navigation with the United States Coast Guard; and Section 10 Permit Authorization with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which will include ESA Section 7 Consultation with National Marine Fisheries Services and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA): Clallam County is lead agency and a SEPA environmental checklist (ECL 2016-03) has been submitted for the proposal. After review of the completed environmental checklist, the SEPA Memo dated July 5, 2017, and other information on file with the agency, the Clallam County Responsible Official has determined that a Mitigated Determination of Non-Significance (MDNS) should be issued for this proposal. The MDNS for this proposal was issued July 6, 2017, and the comment period for this threshold determination ends on July 24, 2017. Unless the Responsible Official withdraws the threshold determination pursuant to WAC 197-11-340(3)(a), the threshold determination shall be final at the end of the comment period. The Hearing Examiner will consider the adequacy of the Threshold Determination at the open record public hearing. Public hearing and comment deadlines: Any interested person may submit written or oral comments on the proposal and the threshold determination of a MDNS prior to the close of the open record hearing. The staff report will be available seven days before the hearing. Any person may also submit a written request to DCD to receive a notice of the decision once it is made. The application and above referenced material is available at DCD On-Line Permit System web site or at our offices at 223 E. 4th St., Suite 5, Port Angeles, WA 98362, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Please contact Greg Ballard, Project Planner at (360) 565-2616, or by email at gballard@co.clallam.wa.us if you have any questions. Pub: July 9, 16, 2017 Legal No.766276

 

 

 

At Elwha River, forests, fish and flowers where there were dams and lakes – Seattle Times

With easy road access to trails open for the first time in years, and the river valley in full summer splendor, the Elwha beckons as never before. Where once there was a dam, today tourists are enjoying the newest interpretive attraction at Olympic National Park, about the world’s biggest-ever dam-removal experiment. Lynda Mapes reports. (Seattle Times)

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/environment/at-elwha-river-forests-fish-and-flowers-where-there-were-dams-and-lakes/

EVENT:The Man Who Built the Sierra Club: A Life of David Brower

Sierra Club Robert Wyss June 2017

Invasive Green Crabs found in Dungeness Refuge

This just in. The finding of these crabs in Dungeness  changes everything. This is a very real threat to our marine life as well as our sewer system outfalls, among other things. Those of us in the Marine Resources Committees and the county people, have known that green crabs were found randomly in isolated numbers west along the Canadian coast, and there have been limited findings of them at a few places around the north Sound. With this discovery though it means there is no turning back and stopping them is going to be very problematic, if it’s even possible. One crab can eat up to 45 clams a day and they reproduce worse than bunny rabbits or rats.

According to the USDA:

Impact: Preys on bivalves and other crustaceans, such as soft-shell clams and scallops (Grosholz and Ruiz 2002)

Heads up that 12 European green crab have been caught so far since last week at the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge. We have been working with USFWS and WA Sea Grant to support a limited rapid response and planning on setting up a stakeholder meeting in the next couple weeks to discuss implications and options. We’ve been in contact with Kelly Toy of Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe.

Allen Pleus
WDFW AIS and BW Unit Lead
(360) 902-2724 office
Allen.Pleus@dfw.wa.gov<mailto:Allen.Pleus@dfw.wa.gov>

Here is a fun short video about them.

%d bloggers like this: