Lemhi Effectiveness Monitoring

Salmonid Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation (RM&E)

Project ID002 11 SA
Recovery DomainsSnake River
Start Date10/11/2012
End Date05/31/2016
Last Edited05/08/2024
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This is an Intensively Monitored Watershed project. Spring/summer Chinook salmon & steelhead were the project targets; objectives & work are described below:
1. Annual juvenile salmonid abundance surveys using remote-site capture & tagging to estimate brood-year specific production.
Juvenile capture & tagging work was generally effective for estimates of total abundance & abundance by tributary. A total population estimate could not be calculated for salmon in 2015 because high pre-spawn adult salmon encounter rates affected recapture in the mainstem Lemhi. Estimates of total abundance & abundance by tributary were generated. Rotary screw trap operation on the lower mainstem Lemhi initiated in spring of 2011.
2. Estimate juvenile salmonid survival by tributary & mainstem. Estimated salmon survival by life stage & rearing location, including: 1) parr survival from PIT-tagging to emigration in the upper mainstem Lemhi above confluence with Hayden Cr. & in Hayden Cr., 2) overwinter survival in the upper mainstem Lemhi above the confluence with Hayden Cr. & in Hayden Cr., 3) parr/presmolt survival in upper mainstem Lemhi & Hayden Cr. to emigration from Lemhi, 4) overwinter (presmolt to smolt) in lower Lemhi, 5) spring smolt spring survival in upper-Lemhi & Hayden Cr. to emigration from Lemhi, 6) overwinter survival for presmolts rearing downstream of Lemhi, either in the upper-mainstem Salmon or Snake above the hydropower system, & 7) survival of spring smolts from Lemhi to Lower Granite Dam. Steelhead survival estimates not generated as currently unable to distinguish rainbow trout.
3. Annually estimate total adult escapement to Lemhi using in-stream PIT tag detection systems & spatial distribution of salmon spawning in Hayden Cr. through redd surveys. Natural-origin adult salmon & steelhead escapement to Lemhi was estimated. Data from temporary weirs in some tributaries suggest a large portion of steelhead escapement is comprised of hatchery-origin adults. Redd surveys used to identify distribution of salmon spawning in Hayden Cr.. Salmon spawning ground surveys conducted in Lemhi tributaries: Hayden, Little Springs, Big Timber, & Canyon creeks. Total redds in the Hayden Cr. drainage increased throughout the reporting period. No spawning activity was documented other surveyed creeks.
4. Assess status & trend of habitat attributes available to anadromous fish using CHaMP & LiDAR. The efficacy of Experimental Advanced Airborne Research Light Detection & Ranging technology was tested using one impacted reach & one reference reach. The large majority of elevations collected with LiDAR were within + 10cm compared to elevations collected by CHaMP survey.
5. Document change in habitat quantity & quality resulting from restoration:
Only Hayden Cr. retained annual hydraulic connection with the Lemhi in 2008. From 2008 to 2013 all restoration work has doubled tributary stream miles available to anadromous salmonids, resulting in 22% increase in stream area, & 19% increase in pool habitat available to anadromous salmonids. Summer parr rearing capacity estimated to have increased by 62%.
6. Model long-term outcomes of restoration work & evaluate potential of restoration work alternatives. Collect ISEMP & CHaMP data to populate model. This life cycle model relates freshwater productivity as a function of habitat quantity & quality.
7. Estimate adult Chinook migration timing & potential barriers with radio telemetry. 65 fish were radio tagged; 42 arrived in Lemhi; information used to evaluate migration timing & mainstem barriers.
8. Record water temperatures at 17 PIT-tag detection locations. Collected.
9. Install 10 new PIT-tag detection systems in tributaries. Evaluate potential sites for a lower-mainstem Lemhi adult capture facility. Installed 10 PIT-tag detection sites. Evaluated adult trap facility site in lower Lemhi; contract amended for funds to construct the adult trap facility.
Final re

Project Benefit    

This project will determine how ESA listed species will respond to habitat actions and will help guide future conservation actions using an adaptive management strategy. Once developed, this strategy will be used to assist other sub-basins in Idaho to allocate restoration efforts to more effectively address life-stage specific limiting factors of Chinook salmon and steelhead populations.


Metric Completed Originally
Research and Monitoring
  Stream Miles Monitored 320.00 320.00

Funding Details

Report Total:$2,694,935

Project Map


Lemhi Subasin    

  • Worksite Identifier: Lemhi Subasin
  • Start Date: 12/01/2012
  • End Date: 04/15/2016
Area Description
4th Field HUC: 1760204 - Lemhi Subbasin

Location Information

  • Basin: Salmon (170602)
  • Subbasin:
  • Watershed:
  • Subwatershed:
  • State: Idaho
  • Recovery Domain: Snake River
  • Latitude: 45.186594
  • Longitude: -113.891065


  • Snake River Basin Steelhead DPS
  • Snake River Spring/Summer-run Chinook Salmon ESU




  • E.0 Salmonid Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation (RM&E)Y (Y/N)
    •      . . E.0.a RM&E Funding 2,694,935.00
    •      . . E.0.b
      Complement habitat restoration project
      PCSRF projects numbered 035 05 SA, 038 05 SA, 036 05 SA, 007 06 SA, 003 08 SA, 009 06 SA, and 003 07 SA
    •      . . E.0.c
      Project identified in a plan or watershed assessment.
      NMFS. 2010. FCRPS BiOp & Lemhi Conservation Program (Lemhi CP) and developing Section 6 Agreement.
    •      . . E.0.d.1 Number of Cooperating Organizations 2
    •      . . E.0.d.2
      Name Of Cooperating Organizations.
      Idaho Department of Fish and Game and BPA
    •      . . E.0.e.1 Number of reports prepared 10
    •      . . E.0.e.2
      Name Of Report
      4 - Biop Special Annual reports Reports, available at BPA EFW website 4 - BPA ISEMP Annual Reports, available at BPA, EFW website 5 - Idaho Pacific Coast Progress reports and, 1 Idaho Pacific Coast Final report. All reports authored by Jody White &/or Chris Beasley, 705 S 8th St, Boise, Idaho 83702
    •      . . E.1 MonitoringY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . E.1.a Monitoring funding 2,694,935.00
      •      . . . . E.1.b.1 Stream Miles Monitored 320.00
      •      . . . . E.1.b.2 Acres of Watershed Area Monitored 326,643.0
      •      . . . . E.1.c.15 Intensively monitored watershed (IMW)Y (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . E.1.c.15.a # miles (to nearest 0.01 mile) of stream or streambank monitored 320.00
        •      . . . . . . E.1.c.15.c # acres (to nearest 0.1 acre) monitored .0
        •      . . . . E.1.d
          Name Of Comprehensive Monitoring Strategy/Program
          2005 Lemhi Conservation Plan (Lemhi CP) Section 6 Agreement under ESA (aka Framework for the Implementation of Habitat Actions in the Lemhi River, State of Idaho and 2005 Salmon Subbasin Pilot Project Monitoring and Evaluation Plan, Quantitative Consultants, Inc., Boise, Idaho