China Camp Creek - Tidegate Replacement (Phase 2)

Salmonid Habitat Restoration and Acquisition

Fish Passage Improvement
Project ID11.438 Coquille 2017
Recovery DomainsOregon Coast
Start Date08/05/2017
End Date07/02/2019
Last Edited10/21/2021
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Phase two of the China Camp Creek Tide Gate Replacement project involved the instillation of side hinged tide gates and culverts along the Coquille river. These “new” style tide gates and their frames will be lifted during flood events to allow full access to and from the Coquille River, where historically there would be no access until the river banks were over-topped. The project components are intended to restore ecological processes, which will create and maintain slow-water refugia. This project will greatly improve access of juvenile OC Coho salmon and other native species (lamprey) to over 1,700 acres of off channel, slow moving water for over winter refugia.

Site 1: Includes improvement of fish passage by replacing seven existing tide gates and culverts with side hinged tide gates mounted on a vertical slide frame controlled by MTR (Muted Tidal Regulator) technology. The installation of these tide gates will provide lateral access to off-channel estuarine tidal areas, allowing for greater over wintering habitat along the Coquille river. One tide gate structure will allow for access to China Camp creek, four tide gate structures to Unit 2 (ODFW parcel which will have restoration activities conducted in 2018), and two tide gate structures will allow access to the east canal. The tide gate structure improvement will now allow access for Oregon Coast coho and winter steelhead in China Camp Creek to a total of 0.6 stream miles, and 5.6 miles for cutthroat trout; while 0.6 miles may seem small, it is an improvement and a step forward to gaining miles for spawning/rearing access for OCC. Additional restoration work is needed on China Camp Creek to improve spawning and rearing habitat, since the current habitat has been degraded due to land management practicies (i.e. silt, mud, turbidity). Implementation of this project, while large in nature, went smoothly. All contractors and sub-contractors worked together to get the culverts built and tide gate structures installed in a timely manner. More great photos and videos can be found at: and

Additional funding for fish and water quality monitoring, and planting have been secured by the Coquille Watershed Association with assistance from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The monitoring effort will provide substantial information of the use patterns, growth rate and other metrics of aquatic organisms that use the project area.

The project was completed on time and just under budget. We are voluntarily terminating the project prior to the grant end date. An approval for termination amendment was granted on July 2, 2019. All funds except for $5,574.95 was spent.

Project Benefit    

The upgraded infrastructure will allow Unit 2 (over 400 acres) to be placed under some level of tidal influence year around. Unit 2 will contain over seven miles of flood plain channels that will be reconnected to the Coquille River through the new culvert/tide gate structure. Estimates of juvenile OC Coho salmon using the Winter Lake area after infrastructure upgrades, implementation of the District Water Management Plan (DWMP), and habitat restoration, is 250,000-300,000 smolts. At present, few exist due to passage problems.
Currently, water quality in the Beaver Slough Drainage District ditch and canal system, as well as China Camp Creek is poor due to high temperatures and low dissolved oxygen. By using the new infrastructure which is capable of adjusting interior water levels and implementation of the DWMP, the District will be able to manage water flows from the Coquille River which will reduce water temperatures and raise dissolved oxygen levels that will help fish, wildlife, and local agricultural operations while addressing the limiting factors identified in the three plans.
This outcome will result in much improved fish passage, especially for juvenile OC Coho salmon and downstream migrating OC Coho smolts. The vertical slide frame equipped tide gates will be raised during winter high water events in the Coquille River to provide full access into the Winter Lake area (approximately 1,700 acres) and the China Camp Creek watershed at a time when OC Coho juveniles are seeking refuge from the high winter flow velocities.
The Nature Conservancy and Wild Rivers Coast Alliance contracted with an OC Coho salmon researcher Tom Nickelson, in 2012 to predict what benefits we could expect by providing much improved access to Winter Lake coupled with restored winter habitat in Unit 2. The estimate of returning adults indicates that with improved fish access into this restored winter rearing habitat that we could see an additional 250-300,000 OC Coho salmon juveniles surviving the winter and migrating to the ocean as smolts, at a larger size with increased survival potential. Additionally, OC Coho salmon juveniles that find their way into Winter Lake area will be able to take advantage of the 400 plus acres of restored high quality rearing habitat in Unit 2 thus improving the effectiveness of the habitat improvement projects that will take place in 2017.


Metric Completed Originally
Estuarine Habitat
  Acres Created
  Acres Treated 1,700.0 1,700.0
Fish Passage
  Barriers Removed 1 1
  Miles Opened .60 .01

Funding Details

Report Total:$3,028,534

Project Map


Site 1    

  • Worksite Identifier: Site 1
  • Start Date:
  • End Date:
Area Description

No Area Description data was found for this worksite.

Location Information

  • Basin: Southern Oregon Coastal
  • Subbasin:
  • Watershed:
  • Subwatershed:
  • State: Oregon
  • Recovery Domain: Oregon Coast
  • Latitude: 43.19471688421564
  • Longitude: -124.26120400428526


  • Oregon Coast Coho Salmon ESU



Construction layout Construction site layout China Camp Creek Project Tide gate and culvert pad Tide gate and culvert pad West canal box culvert Almost complete Complete Complete tide gate structure


  • C.0 Salmonid Habitat Restoration and AcquisitionY (Y/N)
    •      . . C.0.a Habitat restoration and acquisition funding 3,028,534.00
    •      . . C.0.b Length of stream treated/protected .60
    •      . . C.0.c
      Project identified in a Plan or Watershed Assessment
      National Marine Fisheries Service, 2016; Final Recovery Plan for Oregon Coast Coho Salmon Evolutionary Significant Unit; National Marine Fisheries Service, West Coast Region, Portland, Or.
    •      . . C.0.d.1 Project Monitoring (LOV)
    •      . . C.0.d.2 Monitoring Location (LOV)
    •      . . C.2 Fish Passage ImprovementY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . C.2.a Fish Passage Funding 445,634.00
      •      . . . . C.2.b.1 Length of stream made accessible .60
      •      . . . . C.2.b.3 Type of blockage/barrier (LOV)
      •      . . . . C.2.b.4 Number of blockages/impediments/barriers impeding passage 1
      •      . . . . C.2.c.1 Fish passage blockages removed or altered (other than road crossings reported in C.2.f to C.2.i)Y (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.2.c.2 Number of blockages/impediments/barriers removed/altered 1
      •      . . C.9 Estuarine/Nearshore ProjectY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . C.9.a Estuarine/nearshore funding 2,582,900.00
        •      . . . . C.9.b Total amount of estuarine/nearshore area treated 1,700.0
        •      . . . . C.9.e.1 Tidegate alteration/removalY (Y/N)
          •      . . . . . . C.9.e.2 Tidegates altered/removed to allow fish passage 2
          •      . . . . . . C.9.e.3 Acres opened to fish passage 1,700.0