Design/Work Plans for Gravel Placement in Jordan River Reach 1
This project’s goal is to develop the design and work plan for placement of spawning gravel in Reach 1 of the Jordan River (Prescription Site 5 in the Jordan River Restoration Plan, Burt and Hill 2015). The intent is to address all requirements and concerns, and compile results into a document that allows this project to proceed to the construction phase through a November 2017 FWCP grant application. Species expected to benefit include Pink and Chum Salmon. Anecdotal information suggests that historically, the upper part of Reach 1 was the backbone of Pink and Chum production due to the presence of extensive gravel habitat across a wide low gradient riffle. Relocation of the generating station to its current site in 1971, and subsequent operation as a peaking plant, has resulted in scouring of gravel from the river.
When Phases I and II are complete, 1500 square metres of spawning habitat will be restored to this area, potentially supporting annual spawning populations of 3,334 Pink Salmon and 1,500 Chum Salmon. Carcasses from these spawners will add ocean-derived nutrients to waters of the area and downstream, potentially improving primary and secondary production, with benefits to rearing species (e.g. Coho fry) and general ecosystem function within Reach 1.
This project is part of an overall plan that involves bringing together agency representatives, First Nations, local land-owners, and other interested parties into Jordan River Round Table for the purpose of overseeing restoration efforts on the river. This project will help engage these groups in the restoration process. Restoration of this spawning habitat has the potential to result in significant returns of Pink and Chum Salmon in numbers comparable to periods prior to the generating station’s relocation. Such returns could support a small indigenous food fishery, as well as a sport fly fishery. Such a future would be a landmark event for the river, change people’s perception, and greatly increase community activities on the river.