Fox Creek Habitat Restoration

Salmonid Habitat Restoration and Acquisition

Instream Habitat Riparian Habitat Upland Habitat And Sediment
Project ID17-Warm-01
Recovery DomainsInterior Columbia
Start Date03/01/2018
End Date11/30/2019
Year2017
StatusCompleted
Last Edited10/21/2021
 
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Description    


This project is located on Fox Creek, a tributary to the North Fork John Day River, located on private property approximately 2.5 miles west of the town of Fox in Grant County, Oregon. The current instream, riparian and floodplain habitat within the Project reach have been degraded by historic channel straightening and agricultural practices, including livestock grazing and irrigation withdrawals. The straightening of channel meanders between 1946 and 1973 for agricultural (haying) and livestock-grazing purposes has resulted in a disconnected floodplain, decreased sinuosity, bank erosion, and a loss of riparian shrubs. Addition of improperly placed rock as livestock crossings has led to juvenile low flow barriers. This has led to several limiting factors to ESA listed Mid-Columbia Steelhead populations, and the ecological function of the basin as a whole. These limiting factors include degraded channel and floodplain condition, degraded (lacking) riparian zones, altered and degraded water quality and quantity, and fish passage.

In efforts to alleviate all of these limiting factors throughout the project reach, the Landowner contacted the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs with interest in restoration of natural process and function of the area. To restore process, we propose to re-establish natural floodplain interaction and frequency, re-activate and establish channel pattern and sinuosity, add instream habitat features and complexity, and re-establish a natural riparian zone condition through heavy planting and protection efforts.

The activities described below and associated worksite metrics describe solely the PCSRF-funded components of this project (it is not possible at this time to report all activities that will occur at this site in the future through funding from other sources).

PCSRF funds were used specifically for portions of subcontracts installing various work elements. As part of the fencing contract to provide and install wildlife exclusion fencing, funds paid for approximately 1,306 ft of the total 11,540 ft needed to protect the project, and for an associated water gap installation. PCSRF funding was used for floodplain benching under the floodplain reconnection part of the instream subcontract (Reported under c.4.c2. as instream habitat work). This covered a majority of the costs to excavate and stockpile over 13,919 yards of artificial material and create new floodplain zones.

The remaining PCSRF funds covered a large portion of the subcontract to provide and install an off-channel stock water system. 1 trough and 240 acres of management are reported for PCSRF funds.

In-stream construction was completed as of August 2018, which included increasing stream sinuosity by reactivating historic oxbows and creating new channel meanders. The streambed was raised and seven beaver dam analogues were added to improve floodplain inundation, in addition to installing 44 large wood structures to create fish habitat. An off-channel stock water system was installed to alleviate the need for water gaps within the reach and help ranch operations with the rotation of pastures. An 8-foot wildlife fence was completed in October 2018 and was supplemented by an extensive planting effort of over 26,000 riparian plants, to which PCSRF funds contributed. PCSRF funds were also used to develop an informative outreach video of the project, which was completed in 2019. Additional plantings were completed during the fall of 2019, and the project was considered complete at the end of November 2019.

Project Benefit    


Several Benefits are expected to ESA Listed Mid-Columbia Steelhead Populations resulting from this overall project. These include; restoration of natural stream and floodplain process and function, the addition of over 2,450 ft. of stream channel, installation of large woody debris and BDA habitat features, increase of base instream flows through instream lease and floodplain reconnection, decrease of stream temperatures through increased flow, re-establishment of riparian zones, and floodplain / water table interaction. This project will also remove three low flow passage barriers.

One of the main project objectives is to alleviate all of the limiting factors to natural salmonid production in the reach. As with many areas of the basin, juvenile rearing habitat is considered the main limiting factor to population recovery. To promote more juvenile rearing opportunity in the reach, more off channel / high water refugia will be made accessible through creation of alcoves, oxbows, and re-connection with natural stream sinuosity and profile. More pool and cover habitat will be available with channel construction, and installation of large wood and beaver analogue structures. Low flow passage barriers will be eliminated in the reach. Critical instream temperatures will be buffered though increased water table interaction, instream leases, and re-establishment of riparian areas.

The overall restoration of ecological process and stream / watershed function will benefit local and anadromous salmonids through the re-establishment and protection of natural conditions throughout the reach.

Accomplishments

Metric Completed Originally
Proposed
Instream Habitat
  Stream Miles Treated .84 .84
Riparian Habitat
  Stream Miles Treated .25 .25
  Acres Treated 8.0 8.0

Funding Details

SourceFunds
PCSRF$123,675
Report Total:$123,675


Project Map



Worksites

Fox Creek Habitat Project    


  • Worksite Identifier: Fox Creek Habitat Project
  • Start Date: 11/01/2017
  • End Date: 11/30/2019
Area Description

No Area Description data was found for this worksite.

Location Information

  • Basin: John Day
  • Subbasin:
  • Watershed:
  • Subwatershed:
  • State: Oregon
  • Recovery Domain: Interior Columbia
  • Latitude: 44.6489
  • Longitude: -119.1935

ESU

  • Middle Columbia River Steelhead DPS

Map

Photos

Metrics

Metrics
  • C.0 Salmonid Habitat Restoration and AcquisitionY (Y/N)
    •      . . C.0.a Habitat restoration and acquisition funding 123,675.00
    •      . . C.0.b Length of stream treated/protected .84
    •      . . C.0.c
      Project identified in a Plan or Watershed Assessment
      Columbia River Anadromous Fish Restoration Plan of the Nez Perce, Umatilla, Warm Springs and Yakima Tribes. 2013. Update of Wy-Kan-Ush-Mi Wa-Kish-Wit: Spirit of the Salmon Plan, vol. 1. Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission. (+ 5 others)
    •      . . C.0.d.1 Project Monitoring (LOV)
    •      . . C.0.d.2 Monitoring Location (LOV)
    •      . . C.0.d.3
      Monitoring text (from Phase I)
      Ongoing monitoring efforts include surveys for fish, habitat, and riparian vegetation composition.
    •      . . C.4 Instream Habitat ProjectY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . C.4.a Instream Habitat Funding 87,675.00
      •      . . . . C.4.b Total length of instream habitat treated .84
      •      . . . . C.4.c.1 Channel reconfiguration and connectivityY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.4.c.2 Type of change to channel configuration and connectivity (LOV)
        •      . . . . . . C.4.c.3 Miles of stream treated for channel reconfiguration and connectivity .84
        •      . . . . . . C.4.c.4 Miles of off-channel stream created through channel reconfiguration and connectivity .00
        •      . . . . . . C.4.c.6 Instream pools created/added through channel reconfiguration and connectivity 51
      •      . . . . C.4.d.1 Channel structure placementY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.4.d.2 Material used for channel structure (LOV)
        •      . . . . . . C.4.d.3 Miles of stream treated through channel structure placement .84
        •      . . . . . . C.4.d.5 Pools expected to be created through channel structure placement 7
        •      . . . . . . C.4.d.7 Number of structures placed in channel 51
      •      . . C.5 Riparian Habitat ProjectY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . C.5.a Riparian Habitat Funding 11,391.00
        •      . . . . C.5.b.1 Total riparian miles streambank treated .25
        •      . . . . C.5.b.2 Total Riparian Acres Treated 8.0
        •      . . . . C.5.c.1 Riparian plantingY (Y/N)
          •      . . . . . . C.5.c.2
            Species of plants planted in riparian
            Various
          •      . . . . . . C.5.c.3 Acres planted in riparian 8.0
          •      . . . . . . C.5.c.4 Miles of streambank treated with riparian planting .25
        •      . . . . C.5.d.1 FencingY (Y/N)
          •      . . . . . . C.5.d.2 Miles of fence along stream .25
          •      . . . . . . C.5.d.3 Acres of riparian area protected by fencing 8.0
        •      . . . . C.5.f.1 Water gap developmentY (Y/N)
          •      . . . . . . C.5.f.2 Number of water gap installations 1
        •      . . C.6 Upland Habitat And Sediment ProjectY (Y/N)
          •      . . . . C.6.a Upland Habitat / Sediment Funding 24,609.00
          •      . . . . C.6.b.1 Acres of upland habitat area treated .0
          •      . . . . C.6.j.1 Upland livestock management Y (Y/N)
            •      . . . . . . C.6.j.2 Upland livestock management action(s) taken (LOV)
            •      . . . . . . C.6.j.3 Upland acres managed for livestock .0
            •      . . . . . . C.6.j.4 Number of livestock water installations/developments 1