Something To Consider...

SilverFly

Active Member
#16
SF, you didn't direct your question to me, but I am familiar with salmon recovery issues in a couple of Puget Sound watersheds, and have a decent understanding of limiting factors for anadromous fish productivity in others. Based on the work that I have seen or been a part of, your hunch is correct. We've disconnected or outright destroyed large quantities of floodplain and tributary habitats in these watersheds. The various species use the habitats differently, but whether its floodplain connectivity that "absorbs" otherwise scouring flows, or direct juvenile rearing habitat, the loss of early emergence refuges and rearing space creates a freshwater habitat bottleneck that is limiting anadromous productivity. In some watersheds, you can add in the altered hydrograph due to increased impervious area and deforestation of headwaters, not to mention pollution, summertime water withdrawals, etc. etc. that exacerbate the problem.
Look Bub, if I wanted your opinion I'd ask... and discuss it properly over a quality beer. ;)

Seriously though, that’s both encouraging, and disappointing to hear. Encouraging to hear what the root problems really are, and disappointing knowing they will be next to impossible to correct - at least to anything resembling the original state.
 
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Klickrolf

Active Member
#17
Seriously though, that’s both encouraging, and disappointing to hear. Encouraging to hear what the root problems really are, and disappointing knowing they will be next to impossible to correct.
Why should they be next to impossible to correct? Federal flood insurance is a huge part of the problem and it's time for it to be eliminated. Very little, if any, development in flood plains would occur if the costs of flood insurance were not subsidized. Recovery from logging and logging roads should be quick, easy and mostly natural.

Specifying carrying capacity as the limiter sounds like we've accepted things as they are, I don't get it and I don't believe we have to be stuck there. We've designed our land development around taxpayer funding and false assumptions. That's the freshwater problem and it is not impossible to correct.
 

SilverFly

Active Member
#18
Why should they be next to impossible to correct? Federal flood insurance is a huge part of the problem and it's time for it to be eliminated. Very little, if any, development in flood plains would occur if the costs of flood insurance were not subsidized. Recovery from logging and logging roads should be quick, easy and mostly natural.

Specifying carrying capacity as the limiter sounds like we've accepted things as they are, I don't get it and I don't believe we have to be stuck there. We've designed our land development around taxpayer funding and false assumptions. That's the freshwater problem and it is not impossible to correct.
Maybe, maybe not. I dunno, that’s all stuff above my pay grade. Even so, the thought has occurred to me that repeated flood events, or an anomalously large one, could effectively restore some floodplain areas to something resembling their original natural state.

Of course, it all comes down to economics. If as you suggest, federal flood insurance is not fiscally sustainable, then perhaps a window of opportunity might arise at some point for meaningful habitat restoration. With that in mind, it might be a good idea for people with the appropriate expertise to work out some comparative economic valuations of floodplain area in terms of carrying capacity. Essentially, defining what is an acre of floodplain worth in real dollars when it’s producing anadromous fish at CC, vs being used for housing, used car lots, grazing dairy cows, etc…

My guess is that an acre of prime floodplain watershed producing fish naturally at or near CC would outweigh any other use when all factors were considered. Some real numbers demonstrating this could be instrumental in making it a reality.
 
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SilverFly

Active Member
#19
Yeah, what happened to the kelp beds in Puget Sound? Seems to me that bulkheading wouldn't affect kelp the way it might eelgrass, but I'm really just guessing at this. Someone told me that purse seiners had something to do with it since they can't fish in the kelp beds, but I'm not sure how they would actually do that.
Kelp grows so fast (in the right conditions) I doubt there's much anyone could do to essentially eradicate it. Does seem strange that so much kelp has disappeared from PS. Maybe someone at UW has some answers?
 

SilverFly

Active Member
#21
Kelp fastens onto rocky bottoms, so i wonder if there's sand or silt coming in?
Well, I gots all curious and did some googlin'. Some interesting projects and information can be found here:

http://www.restorationfund.org/projects/kelp

http://www.pugetsoundnearshore.org/technical_papers/kelp.pdf

Based on the above white paper, you would be at least partially correct that sedimentation is a major hitter affecting kelp (and eel grass) abundance and distribution.
 

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