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BOR reduces Iron Gate Dam flows
The BOR recently determined Iron Gate Dam flow releases will be reduced to 900 cubic feet per second by the end of the month to retain between 4,800 and 5,300 acre-feet of water in Upper Klamath Lake, according to Sheryl Franklin, the BOR Klamath Basin Area Office manager.The flow reductions were coordinated through the Klamath River Flow Account Scheduling Technical Advisory (FASTA) team, which is made up of representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), National Marine Fisheries Services (NMFS), four Klamath Basin tribes and other stakeholders with experience in Klamath River watershed management.
Coho salmon protectionAccording to Franklin, the BOR’s proposal to adjust Iron Gate Dam flows is consistent with requirements of the 10-year joint biological opinion that was released last year. The opinion, created by the USFWS and the NMFS, provides management guidelines for Basin species protected by the Endangered Species Act.
The biological opinion is set to expire March 31, 2023.According to the opinion, the management operations are intended to meet the needs of coho salmon in the Klamath River, while balancing the needs of listed suckers in Upper Klamath Lake.
“That water is maintaining endangered species,” Franklin said.Franklin said the new guidelines will help reduce the potential for disease or fish die-offs. Fish respond to annual cycles and need more water in the spring and less in the summer, she noted.
Nick Hetrick, a supervisory fish biologist for the Arcata Fish and Wildlife, said coho in the Klamath River now are zero to one-year-plus fish that are likely heading downstream to the ocean or river tributaries.Joint effort
Franklin said although the FASTA team is adjusting flows in the Klamath River, it is important to note the adjustments would not necessarily increase the amount of water available to Project irrigators.“Reclamation recognizes that due to this year’s exceedingly dry hydrologic conditions, the entire agricultural community has suffered a curtailment in their water supply,” she said.
Franklin added that in an effort to ensure available water supplies are maximized to meet the Basin’s agricultural and ecological needs, the BOR will continue coordinating with the USFWS, NMFS, Klamath Tribes, and Klamath Project water users throughout the remainder of the 2014 water email@example.com ; @LMJatHandN
The BOR recently determined Iron Gate Dam flow releases will be reduced to 900 cubic feet per second by the end of the month to retain between 4,800 and 5,300 acre-feet of water in Upper Klamath Lake, according to Sheryl Franklin, the BOR Klamath Basin Area Office manager.
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Page Updated: Friday July 04, 2014 03:08 AM Pacific
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