SALEM, Ore — The End Creek Restoration Project in the Grande Ronde Valley that created habitat for ESA listed spring chinook salmon and summer steelhead was awarded the Western Division American Fisheries Society’s Riparian Challenge Award for 2007.
The project, located about eight miles north of La Grande, enhanced both stream corridor and wetlands. Project elements include improved steelhead spawning habitat and juvenile rearing habitat. The project will also reduce water temperatures and enhance the diversity and abundance of insect, amphibian, and avian communities that rely on wetland and riparian habitat.
The project was a cooperative effort among three Grande Ronde Basin landowners and the Grande Ronde Model Watershed, Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Grande Ronde Fish Habitat Program. Funding for the project was provided by Bonneville Power Administration, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board, NRCS, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife.
“This is the third year in a row that our department has been recognized for stream restoration work,” said Grande Ronde Watershed District Manager Bruce Eddy. “We have a great team and I am proud of the work we are doing for salmon, steelhead and resident trout in this part of the state.”
The purpose of the Riparian Challenge award is to encourage conservation agencies or private industry to strive for excellence in riparian and watershed habitat management. The award will be presented at the American Fisheries Society’s 137th Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA, Sept. 2-6, 2007.
“We’re pleased that organizations such as the AFS recognize the complex voluntary relationships between private landowners, State, Tribal, Federal, and non-profit groups as they try to identify limiting habitat factors and address them with cooperative solutions,” said Grande Ronde Model Watershed Executive Director Jeff Oveson. “The Grande Ronde Model Watershed is very proud to be a part of this partnership.”