Fish habitat projects in Santa Barbara and Ventura receive state funding

STATEWIDE — Fish migration and passage projects in Santa Barbara and Ventura were among the initiatives receiving funding for the upcoming year from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW), it was announced. The funding is part of the department’s Fisheries Restoration Grant Program’s annual Proposal Solicitation Notice.

Earth Island Institute in the Ventura area will receive funding support for its Wheeler Gorge Campground final designs.

“The objective of this project is to complete the designs for the removal of four barriers to Southern steelhead migration in the Wheeler Gorge Campground on North Fork Matilija and Bear Creeks, and replace two of these barriers with vehicular bridges,” a DFW description of the Earth Island Institute said. “This will allow for the completion of the 65 percent, 90 percent and 100 percent designs for this project. Removal of these barriers will result in an additional 13 miles of good quality habitat to be made available … in the Ventura River watershed.”

Cachuma Operation and Maintenance Board, meanwhile, will receive funding for a fish passage improvement project in the Santa Barbara area.

“[This project will] provide 3.03 miles of spawning and rearing habitat for southern steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) by removing the passage migration barrier at Crossing 8 and replacing it with a 54-foot span concrete bottomless arch culvert (bridge),” DFW staff stated in a description about the project.

Funding was also provided for statewide watershed steward programs, a fish passage assessment database and continuation of the California Monitoring Program Project.

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