Fish Passage Barriers

Fish Passage Barriers

The Scappoose Bay Watershed Council has been working to replace culverts and other fish-passage barriers that exclude salmon and other fish from prime spawning grounds in the upper tributaries.

SBWC has worked with a variety of partners to remove or replace 40 barriers, opening up over 55 miles of creek for fish access. We have been systematically working our way through the watershed over the last several years to replace priority barriers.  In 2010-2011, we finished up work on Salmon and Cox Creeks and our next priority will be culverts along Dart Creek.

Site selection is based on the following watershed plans: A Comprehensive Assessment of Fish Passage Barriers in the Scappoose Bay Watershed (May 2001), Scappoose Bay Watershed Assessment (January 2000) and Strategic Plan (January 2008). The comprehensive barrier assessment, conducted on behalf of the Watershed Council, shows that barriers have a significant cumulative impact on fish habitat on most streams in the watershed. The assessment used biological criteria and findings of the Scappoose Bay Watershed Assessment to prioritize barriers for each sub-watershed and for the watershed as a whole. The priorities are based on whether the barrier is in a key sub-watershed (e.g. Scappoose Creek or Milton Creek), is a complete or partial barrier, and rank on a habitat index score (based on whether the barrier blocks access to upstream refugia and the length of potential upstream habitat).