Storey Creek Fish Passage Project

by | Feb 8, 2019 | 2019, Media/News, Projects

Storey Creek Golf Club

Fish Passage Improvement Project – Hole # 14

Project Background

The proposed project is within the Storey Creek Golf Course which encompasses both the Storey Creek and Woods Creek watersheds. The project site is within the Woods Creek watershed and is located adjacent to the 14th Hole.

A large pond approximately 300 metres in length lies to the west of the 14th fairway and forms the headwaters of this particular branch of Woods Creek. The pond is groundwater fed with very little fluctuations in water levels throughout the year but there are inputs of surface runoff during the winter months. It has a small population of Cutthroat Trout and has been utilized for the headwater planting of Coho fry by DFO staff for at least 10 years. The source of the fry plantings has been the Quinsam DFO hatchery located in Campbell River. The west side of the pond is surrounded by a substantial riparian area and the east side is open fairway. Although the pond is man made, it contains all of the essential elements for rearing salmonids and represents the largest amount of off-channel rearing habitat in the upper part of the Woods Creek watershed.

The outlet of the pond connects to a narrow entrenched channel that has a migration barrier located 30 metres downstream. The barrier consists of a vertical drop of 1 metre down into wooden flume that is approximately 100 metres in length where is connects to a section that was rebuilt as part of a stream enhancement project sometime in the 1990’s. The wooden flume is 1 metre by 1 metre and has no habitat suitable for fish. The sides of the structure have rotted to the point where they a starting to collapse. The enhanced channel has a stream morphology consistent with a small coastal stream and has a combination riffles and pools including the placement of log structures and spawning gravels suitable for Coho Salmon and Cutthroat Trout.

The project being proposed is to replace the original constructed channel with a new channel with a similar morphology as the enhanced channel. The slope of the new channel would range from 0.5% to 4.4% and include a combination of riffles and shallow pools with a gravel substrate. The removal of the migration barrier would allow juvenile Coho from the lower reaches of Woods Creek to utilize the abundant habitat in the pond as overwintering habitat and the new channel itself would provide an overall net gain of in stream habitat.

The project was funded by the Campbell River Salmon Foundation and the Storey Creek Golf Club.