200704500 - Beebe Property Upland, Riparian, and Wetland Enhancements
Sponsor: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)
Budgets: FY07: $739,765 | FY08: $120,432 | FY09: $58,488
Short description: WDFW will initiate riparian, wetland, instream, and upland habitat restoration on the Beebe Springs property. This work will compliment Beebe Creek restoration and development of interpretive and educational projects currently underway.
Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)
Funding category: Expense
Recommended budgets: FY07: $0 | FY08: $0 | FY09: $0
ISRP final recommendation: Response requested
Generally, this proposal should benefit fish and wildlife. However, there are no detailed plans for pre- and post- enhancement monitoring presented. If monitoring of this project is to be conducted as part of a larger evaluation effort, this effort should be noted in the proposal. A response is needed to address this omission. Technical and scientific background: The proposal provides excellent background on the history of the property, the need for habitat protection, and general plans for the rehabilitation of the project property. Rationale and significance to subbasin plans and regional programs: The proposed actions will increase the availability of habitat types indicated as "focal habitats" in the Upper Middle Mainstem Columbia (UMM) Subbasin Plan. However, nowhere in this plan is Beebe Creek or the associated terrestrial habitats explicitly mentioned as a location where restoration efforts should be focused. Nonetheless, the opportunity to add to the amount of area occupied by focal habitats in the plan area does indicate that this proposal fits well with the general objectives of the subbasin plan. The number of comparable projects that have been undertaken in the region also suggests the significance of these types of efforts. Relationships to other projects: Many of the related projects addressed in the proposal are efforts in the same general area that are applying similar treatments. There really isn't any direct relationship between the proposed work and the other projects, except that they are all potentially contributing to an increase in certain habitat types in the region. On the other hand, there clearly is a close association with those projects that have been funded and implemented on the Beebe property. This project appears to be well aligned with the overall restoration plan for the Beebe site. Objectives: The objectives of the project are appropriate and expressed quantitatively for habitat components (at least in terms of acres or linear miles to be created). Some more specific objectives about fish and wildlife population response would have strengthened the objectives and provided a basis for developing a more detailed monitoring effort (see comments below). The expectation that adding structure and islands to the shallow water area in the Columbia River adjacent to the project site will increase populations of rearing anadromous fishes appears to make sense. However, some discussion about possible negative impacts of these enhancements also should be addressed. Is it possible that increasing the complexity of the nearshore habitat will attract large numbers of piscivorous fishes and birds? If so, will the attraction of juvenile salmon and steelhead to this site lead to mortality rates higher than would have been the case under unimproved conditions? These questions cannot be answered but should be raised in the proposal and be included as part of the monitoring effort. Tasks (work elements) and methods: Work elements are well outlined and in appropriate detail for a proposal. They are the logical steps for each objective. Monitoring and evaluation: The monitoring component of the proposal is very brief and incomplete. Specific monitoring objectives are provided. However, the methods are given only by reference to a WDFW document. The proposal indicates that habitat and wildlife populations will be monitored using the HEP protocol (see the ISRP’s programmatic comments on HEP). No mention is made of the specific methods to be used, how often assessments will be made, etc. There is no indication that any monitoring of fish populations will be conducted. Some detail on the monitoring process to be used to ensure establishment of the riparian plantings also should be included. Facilities, equipment, and personnel: Not much information is given. The assumption is that a contractor will do the work and that company will have the right equipment. WDFW would supervise. Nothing is given on personnel. Information transfer: There has been significant interaction with the local community already on this project, and an educational component is being built into the plans for the site. No indication of how information from any monitoring conducted at the site will be shared. Benefits to focal and non-focal species: Given the paucity of natural riparian and upland habitats in the Upper Middle Mainstem Columbia region, the creation of these habitats at the Beebe site should have a positive effect on many of the species listed as focal in the proposal. But see comments above about possible unintended consequences of developing shallow water habitat and fish predators. Otherwise, the list of focal species was very broad, and most may benefit from this project. There seems little potential for negative impacts. The ISRP believes a response to these concerns and questions will result in a much stronger proposal.
Response loop edit
See the sponsor's revised proposal from the response loop. You'll be taken to CBFWA's proposal system in Section 10 where most sponsors uploaded revised narratives or other responses to the ISRP comments.
State/province recommendation: Washington
Review group: Washington list
Recommended budgets: FY07: (n/a) | FY08: (n/a) | FY09: (n/a)
Comment: See Washington guidance