Improving fish passage in our Peace Region

Project Year: 2019-2020

Photo: A. Irvine, New Graph Environment

Project Lead

Society For Ecosystem Restoration in North Central BC

Watershed/Sub-region

Peace Region

Parsnip Arm

Project Type

Research & Information Acquisition

FWCP Contribution

$65,221

Action Plan Alignment

Streams Action Plan

Project ID

PEA-F20-F-2967

Fish passage assessments and habitat confirmations

The goal of this project is to create a shortlist of culverts candidates for restoration of fish passage in the Parsnip River Watershed based on watershed-wide ecological and cultural values, while building capacity, awareness, and momentum for fish passage restoration in the Peace Region. This will be achieved through a data analysis exercise, First Nations input, First Nations training, fish passage assessments, and habitat confirmation assessments. Assessments will follow standardized protocols developed by the Province of B.C., and the Fish Passage Technical Working Group. Data from this project will be entered into the Provincial Stream Crossing Inventory System database (PSCIS).

Update: 14 kilometres of stream assessed

More than 14 linear kilometres of stream habitat have been assessed in the Parsnip River Watershed near Mackenzie. The assessments were carried out over 17 separate streams above 19 culverts—or road crossings—that block passage to bull trout, burbot, Arctic grayling, and mountain whitefish.

Delivered by the Society for Ecosystem Restoration, the project involved monitors from the McLeod Lake Indian Band. They were trained for fish passage assessment and habitat-confirmation procedures, and conducted field surveys.

Culvert restoration in the Parsnip River Watershed will benefit fish by improving fish movement to habitats that offer refuge during high flows, access to food, shelter from predators, and optimal conditions for spawning and rearing.