Carmel River Lagoon steelhead trout project delayed again – California News

Carmel River Lagoon steelhead trout project delayed again – California News

Carmel >> The plan to drop large woody debris structures into the Carmel River Lagoon has been postponed until Oct. 18, according to the Carmel River Steelhead Association.

“We … received notification from the helicopter company that all their helicopters are on fire fights and will be committed until past our installation date of Sept. 20,” said Brian LeNeve, president of the steelhead association, in an email.

The work has until Oct. 31 to be done to avoid steelhead migration. It had been scheduled before in June, but a fire pulled the helicopter off the job as it has done again with the Sept. schedule.

The purpose of the $360,000, Coastal Conservancy-funded, Carmel River Lagoon Large Woody Debris Augmentation project is to enhance steelhead trout rearing and holding habitat in the Carmel River Lagoon.

“We have scheduled a third attempt for Oct. 18, hopefully that time the helicopter will be available,” said LeNeve.

The Carmel River Steelhead Association has been preparing for this project for nine years and has obtained the necessary permits for the augmentation project including from the FAA for the site plan’s flight path, and from other agencies, such as, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, National Marine Fisheries Service, United States Fish & Wildlife Service, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board.

The large woody debris structures are made up of redwood root balls, granite boulders and large gray pine logs. The project will employ a Siller Helicopter to lift and place the materials in the lagoon and river at 11 designated spots.

The wood and…

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