LWD Phase I Press Release


Subject: Carmel River Lagoon Project
Date: Thursday, May 18, 2006 11:00:05 PM
From: Hank H Smith


Saturday, May 20, at 8 AM, construction will begin on a habitat improvement for the South Arm of the Carmel River Lagoon. Carmel Valley Construction owner, Gerry Paddock, has made a donation of over $55,000 of construction effort toward the installation of Large Woody Debris into the South Arm to provide sanctuary protection for the endangered Carmel River Steelhead and other creatures which depend upon the lagoon for their health and survival. These Large Woody Debris will partly provide an environment which one would normally find in a lagoon before manipulation by man. This project has taken over two years to acquire all the materials and necessary permits for it to go forward. Recent studies have shown that steelhead which spend the early part of their life in a lagoon not only have their chances of survival in the ocean dramatically improved but also their return rates to the rivers of their birth. DNA analysis have indicated the Carmel River Steelhead are unique to this river and thus are not found anywhere else in the world. This may partly explain why such groups as the Carmel River Steelhead Association and the Carmel River Watershed Conservancy work so hard and enthusiastically for their survival. For example, volunteer steelhead rescue teams from the Carmel River Steelhead Association, under the direction of Frank Emerson, rescued over 23,000 steelhead from the Carmel River and its tributaries this past year. In most years these teams would consider 8 to 9 thousand steelhead rescued a normal year. However, due to increased efforts to recruit volunteers, they were able to expand the number of evenings and weekends toward this effort.  Those who are interested in participating in steelhead rescues may call CRSA Vice President, Frank Emerson at 831-277-0544. Notification of rescue events are sent via email each week during the rescue season (usually June thru late August when the lower parts of the river dry up and the fish are stranded in small pools of water) and those who can make it send a reply. Some volunteers are only able to make one or two events in a season while others rarely miss. Other commitments which each person has and their level of interest which determines the frequency of their participation.  Safety and orientation briefings are provided at the beginning of each event.

The effort to improve the lagoon is an example of how cooperation among different agencies, companies and community groups can make a difference. California State Parks staff; National Marine Fisheries; California Department of Fish & Game; Monterey Peninsula Water Management District; Carmel Area Wastewater District\; U S Army Corps of Engineers; US Fish & Wildlife Service; Bureau of Land Management, Fort Ord; University of California, Santa Cruz; Cal Poly State University, Santa Cruz; Big Creek Lumber Company; CAL-AM Water Company; Granite Rock Corporation; Monterey County Public Works; Cal-Trans; City of Monterey, Public Works; Monterey Bay Area Research Institute; Hildebrand Trucking; Associated Aggregates Incorporated; Carmel River Watershed Conservancy; Carmel Development Corporation; Carmel River Steelhead Association; West Coast Wire Rope, Oakland; Pacific Gas & Electric; MacLean Power Systems, Petaluma; Wermuth & Cahoon Moving & Storage; have all contributed in one way or another to the this project.

Besides the many contributions of time and professional efforts, the list of materials and transportation contributed are impressive. 40 tons of granite boulders, 22 redwood root balls, 1500 feet of cable, 16 swamp anchors, 9 logs over 40 feet long, 4 logging truck trips from Santa Cruz, 8 dump truck trips from Santa Cruz, 2 dump truck trips from Watsonville, and one lift truck trip from Monterey.

Individuals from the following agencies contributed:

Larry Hampson, Monterey Peninsula Management District

John Mckeon, biologist, NOAA

Brian Cluer, fluvial geomorphologist, NOAA

Leah Mahan, grant administrator, NOAA

Clive Sanders, administrator, CRWC

Serge Glushkoff, biologist, CDFG

Kevan Urquhart, biologist, CDFG

Mike Hill, biologist, CDFG

Amy Palkovic, botanist, State Parks

Dave Dixon, biologist, State Parks

Pam Armas, Chief Ranger, State Parks

Ken Gray, planner, State Parks

Chris Peregrin, biologist, State Parks

Brett Caton, Construction Manager, UC Santa Cruz

Bob Reynolds, Forester, Big Creek Lumber

Andy Morse, forester, Big Creek Lumber

Steve Leonard, Manager, CAL AM Water

Charlie Kemp, Ops manager, CAL AM Water

Leslie Silva, Superintendent, CAL AM Water

Scott Kasey, Transportation manager, CAL AM Water

Bruce Woolpert, owner, Granite Rock

Vic Lewis, Public Works, Monterey County

Teresa Salak, Big Sur, CAL TRANS

Bill Collins, biologist, Fort Ord

Eric Morgan, Manager, BLM Fort Ord

Steve Ahten, manager, CAL POLY-Santa Cruz

Stewart Lemerdine, ops manager, Moss Landing Marine Laboratory

Mike Kelly, ops manager, Monterey Bay Area Research Institute

Theron Hildebrand, owner, Hildebrand Trucking

Marty, manager, Associated Aggregates

Stephen McCarthy Lancaster, owner, MacLean Power Systems

Bob Frietas, coordinator, Pacific Gas & Electric

George Smith, warehouseman, Pacific Gas & Electric

Michael Waxer, Carmel Development Corporation

Ray Van Doren, CAWWD

Richard Heimann, biologist, CRSA

Henry Meyer, electrician, CRSA

Robert Zampatti, secretary, CRSA

Dr Roy Thomas, President, CRSA

Vince Torras, Treasurer, CRSA

Frank Emerson, Vice-president CRSA

Kevan Hall, manager, West Coast Wire Rope, Oakland

Ron Rader, Allied Van Lines