“We’re not wired for ‘Kumbaya’ here,” says a smiling Mike Tobin, district manager of the North Yakima Conservation District. But he has a good reason to celebrate. Mike is part of a collaboration that has launched a struggling creek on a water-fueled renaissance. If you’ve ever shopped in a North American supermarket, it’s likely you’ve […]
With innovative thinking and a cooperative partnership, there’s no need to choose between water for farming and water for fish. Taneum Creek, in Kittitas County, is living proof that both can thrive. In the face of competing interests and potential water conflicts along the creek, WWT helped a voluntary partnership with diverse interests negotiate a […]
The Touchet River is a crucial waterway for endangered bull trout, steelhead and reintroduced spring Chinook salmon in eastern Washington, however problems with water quantity, mainstem passage, and riparian habitat pose significant challenges to their survival. In many years, low flows and high temperatures limit downstream migration of juvenile steelhead and upstream migration of adult […]
WWT has been working to restore flow to the Teanaway River since 2003 when many stretches of this beautiful river important for endangered salmon would run dry in drought years and dangerously low even in normal years. Today, the Teanaway flows year round but we are still working to ensure the river has enough flow for fish to be able to pass critical riffles to reach upstream habitat. During the historic drought of 2015, the Teanaway River continued to flow thanks to WWT's flow agreements with local irrigators, saving local fish and wildlife from an environmental catastrophe.
For more than 100 years Salmon Creek ran dry in the late summer and fall due to water diversions for irrigation. Today however, WWT in partnership with the Colville Confederated Tribes and the Okanogan Irrigation District ensures that extra water is released into the creek from upstream reservoirs to support steelhead throughout the entire year.
WWT has worked with the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the City of Walla Walla and landowners to help rewater 31 miles of Mill Creek that would get almost entirely diverted in late summer, and support passage for threatened summer steelhead and bull trout to quality upstream habitat.
“As we studied this system, we quickly realized that just small increases in the flows of Cascade Creek during the late summer would make a life or death difference for the fish populations there.” -Amanda Cronin, former WWT employee