The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) invites Sonoma County residents to two upcoming public meetings to discuss the impacts of the drought on endangered coho salmon and other aquatic life. CDFW is urging landowners to commit to voluntary water conservation measures in critical watersheds as a necessary means to save the fish.
The meetings will be held in Occidental and Windsor at the following locations:
Thursday, May 14, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Salmon Creek Elementary School
1935 Bohemian Highway
Thursday, May 21, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Mary Agatha Furth Center
8400 Old Redwood Highway
CDFW is working closely with several other agencies and organizations, including water interests, to develop strategies to keep enough water in the creeks to support coho salmon throughout the summer. Without major water-saving efforts, the fish will die from low water levels and high temperatures.
In addition to promoting water conservation, the department is asking landowners near Dutch Bill, Green Valley, Mark West and Mill creeks to allow CDFW personnel access to their property for continuing fish and creek monitoring. Fish rescue operations may be necessary later in the summer.
During the meetings, CDFW representatives will provide an overview of the drought and its impact on these watersheds, the department’s concerns and roles, and basic history and science of the species in these historic waterways. Representatives from local community resource conservation groups will provide information on water conservation strategies and technical assistance to landowners.
In April 2015 Governor Jerry Brown issued an Executive Order declaring a state of emergency and called on California residents to reduce water consumption wherever possible. The State Water Resources Control Board adopted an emergency regulation requiring an immediate 25 percent reduction in overall potable urban water use statewide in accordance with the Executive Order. The state drought web page can be found at drought.ca.gov.
For complete information and documents to download go to CDFW’s Voluntary Drought Initiative webpage at goo.gl/4rOjd0.
Andrew Hughan, CDFW Communications, (916) 322-8944