Improving spawning and rearing habitat near Second Island Channel in the Campbell River Watershed

Project Year: 2018-2019

Project Lead

Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada


Coastal Region


Project Type

Habitat-Based Actions

FWCP Contribution


Action Plan Alignment

Rivers, Lakes and Reservoirs

Project ID


Update: 12,000 m2 of salmon habitat restored at Second Island

To help Chinook, Steelhead, Coho, and Chum populations, A-Tlegay Fisheries Society, in partnership with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and BC Parks, have restored a side channel in Campbell River.

By removing a gravel plug at the entrance to the channel, along with modifying three rock weirs, the project re-established surface water flows in the Second Island side channel. The weirs were contributing to excess gravel accumulation that eliminated spawning habitat and stranded juvenile salmonids.

Now that the gravel has been removed, approximately 8,000 m2 of habitat has been restored within the side channel. In addition, the gravel was re-used in the mainstem to improve 4,000 m2 of Chinook spawning habitat.

It is anticipated that, over the long term, the work will allow gravel to move more freely though the system during high flow events and the natural channel function will be restored.


Campbell River Second Island channel restoration

The area within and just upstream of Second Island channel on the Campbell River requires in-stream works to deal with severe impacts to spawning and rearing habitats, resulting from very high main-stem flows in the Campbell River last November. Gravel accumulations in the channel are now too high to provide suitable spawning habitat at regular flows, and creates stranding issues for juveniles at low flows, reducing the rearing potential of the Campbell River by over 8000m². Gravel deposition has been accelerated by three rock weirs in the channel that were constructed in the 1990s to retain gravel before the upstream gravel placement program began. This project proposes to remove part, or all, of the weirs and use the accumulated gravel to create spawning habitat in the river mainstem.