Salmonid Restoration Federation

3rd Steelhead Summit Agenda - Conservation Strategies for Steelhead Recovery

Monday, December 3


Orientation Presentations

The Origins of Life History Variation in Oncorhynchus mykiss, John Carlos Garza, PhD, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries

Implementing Risk Mitigation Strategies to Protect Vulnerable Native O. mykiss Populations in Southern California, Sandra Jacobson, PhD, CalTrout

Coastal Monitoring and Limiting Factors for Steelhead: Status, Challenges, and Opportunities – Presentations and Panel Discussion

The Current Status of Southern California Steelhead Monitoring, Kyle Evans, CDFW

Abundance and Distribution of Steelhead in the Santa Monica Bay, Rosi Dagit, Santa Monica Mountains RCD

Steelhead Monitoring In the Santa Ynez Watershed, Tim Robinson, Cachuma Operations and Maintenance Board

Drought, Fire, and Floods — Adapting to a New Era of Climate Change

Southern California Steelhead Fire Regime: Landscapes and Life-Cycles, Mark Capelli, PhD, Southern California Steelhead Recovery Coordinator, NOAA Fisheries

The Effects of Drought and Wildfire on Oncorhynchus mykiss and Stream Communities of Southern California, Kristie Klose, PhD, Forest Fisheries Biologist

Balancing Habitat and Public Safety for Future Conditions, Pam Lindsey, Watershed Ecologist, Ventura County Watershed Protection District

Fire and Flow Forum: A Stakeholder Response to Rise of Climatic Threats in Southern California Watersheds, Stacie Smith, NOAA Restoration Center

Instream Flow Needs for Improving Steelhead Recovery

Environmental Engagement in Groundwater Sustainability Agencies to Protect Groundwater Dependent Ecosystems and Steelhead as Beneficial Users, Candice Meneghin, Friends of the Santa Clara River

Creative Water Transactions to Streamline Permitting and Enhance Streamflow, Matt Clifford, JD, Trout Unlimited

Moving Into Action: Finding Real Solutions for Fisheries and Communities in Ventura County, Regina Hirsh, Sierra Watershed Progressive

Poster Session

Tuesday, December 4 — Full-Day Concurrent Field Tours


Santa Monica Bay Steelhead Road Trip

Field Tour Coordinator: Rosi Dagit, Senior Biologist, Santa Monica Mountains Resource Conservation District

This tour will visit the lifecycle monitoring site at the restored Rodeo Grounds in lower Topanga State Park, and then head down to Topanga Lagoon, to discuss on-going restoration planning. From there, participants will go to the overlook to see Rindge Dam on Malibu Canyon Rd., and discuss the removal plans, then head back to the ocean to visit the restored Malibu Lagoon and walk out to Surfrider Beach. On the way back to Ventura, the tour will stop to look at the bridge replacement and pending lagoon restoration at Trancas Creek.

Impacts to the Southern Santa Barabara County Steelhead Streams by the Thomas Fire and Debris Flows Field Tour

Tour Coordinators: Tim Robinson, Cachuma Operations and Maintenance Board and Mauricio Gomez, South Coast Habitat Restoration.

The devastating Thomas Fire in December 2017 and subsequent debris flows in January 2018 negatively impacted riparian and steelhead habitat in the Santa Barbara and Ventura Region. On this field tour, we will visit creeks in Santa Barbara County and see the impact that occurred and the recovery to date. The tour will stop at various locations in Carpinteria and Montecito.

Addressing Fire Impacts, Water Resiliency while Enhancing Instream Flows in Upper Ventura Watershed

Tour Coordinator: Regina Hirsch of Sierra Watershed Progressive

This tour will begin by exploring the habitat above Matilija Dam and move downstream to the Ojai valley. The field tour will visit reduced consumptive use and efficiency projects to enhance instream flows including the Gobernador and Carpinteria Creeks restoration projects as well as the Ojai Valley Inn Project.  

Wednesday, December 5 — Concurrent Full-Day Workshop or Field Tour


Flow Enhancement and Water Rights Workshop  

Matt Clifford, JD, California Water Project, and Tom Hicks, Water Law Attorney

Lack of adequate streamflow, particularly during California’s long summer dry season, is one of the most  prevalent factors limiting the recovery of steelhead and salmon in the state’s coastal watersheds.  California conservation professionals are at the forefront of an emerging movement to improve instream flows and aquatic conservation values through the implementation of voluntary projects with willing landowners and water right holders.  Developing and implementing such projects can be challenging, because the underlying law, policy, and science are complex, and often raise distinct issues unlike those encountered in other types of restoration projects.  This workshop will provide an overview of streamflow restoration in coastal California.  Part I will be a crash course in the basics of California water law. Part II will provide an overview of various types of projects that are being used to enhance dry season streamflows.  Part III will discuss several current policy challenges that have emerged in the course of streamflow restoration work, and potential solutions.  Audience participation will be encouraged throughout the day.

Limiting Factors—Fish Passage Barriers and Drought Conditions in the Lower Santa Ynez River and Gaviota Coast Tour

This tour will visit two creeks in each of the Lower Santa Ynez River basin and the Gaviota Coast where extensive efforts are ongoing or in planning for fish passage and habitat restoration for the endangered southern steelhead. Current project managers will describe the restoration objectives and projects in Hilton and Quiota creeks (two that are near completion) in the Lower Santa Ynez area and Gaviota and Arroyo Hondo creeks on the Gaviota Coast. These creeks are some of the remaining strongholds for steelhead in a region under critical drought conditions.