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Redband trout spawning habitat improved on Wood River
November 5, 2009


Wood River
Large wood placed in the Wood River provides hiding cover for spawning redband trout. This 2-mile reach of the Wood River provides all available spawning habitat for redband trout from Upper Klamath and Agency lakes.
Photo by ODFW
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore.— Redband trout from Upper Klamath and Agency lakes now getting ready to spawn in the Wood River will find greatly improved habitat thanks in part to a $10,746 grant from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program.

The grant was used to help fund a project to add in-stream wood structure and spawning gravel to a one-mile section of the Wood River. The project was completed on Sept. 30.

The reach of Wood River located about two miles below its headwaters provides all the available spawning habitat for redband trout from Upper Klamath and Agency lakes. In the past, most of the naturally occurring in-stream woody debris was removed.  That, along with overgrazing by livestock, reduced fish habitat and increased bank erosion which caused sediment to cover available spawning gravel.

The project involved installing 43 logs and root wads to provide structure, and placing 100 cubic yards of spawning gravel. In addition to improving spawning habitat, the project will also benefit fry and juvenile redband trout, as well as the bull trout, chinook salmon and steelhead that biologists hope to re-established in the Klamath River basin.

“Next we’ll monitor the spawning period and do visual and snorkeling surveys to see how the juveniles and fry are doing,” said Bill Tinniswood, ODFW assistant district fish biologist for the Klamath Watershed District.

Redband trout typically begin spawning in the Wood River in November, peaking in December and January.

In addition to the R&E Program grant, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife Klamath Watershed District, Klamath Guides Association, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also contributed to the project. The Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program has funded other redband trout habitat improvement projects on the Wood River in the past.

Created by the Oregon Legislature in 1989, the Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program is funded by a surcharge on sport and commercial fishing licenses and commercial poundage fees. The program’s seven-member citizen board reviews fish restoration and enhancement project proposals and makes funding recommendations to the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission.

For more information on the Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program, or to view information regarding current R&E Program applications, visit contact program coordinator Laura Tesler at (503) 947-6259.




Bill Tinniswood (541) 883-5732
Jessica Sall (503) 947-6023                                                                           
Fax: (503) 947-6009



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