Tuesday, September 30, 2014

WATER RELEASE AIDS CHINOOK SPAWN




During the week of September 29, Nanaimo Forest Products and the City of Nanaimo will be releasing water from the Fourth Lake and Jump Creek reservoirs to provide a temporary pulse flow to the Nanaimo River.  A partnership between the Nanaimo Fish Hatchery and the two water licensees, in concert with Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations has existed for a number of years.  The parties come together annually to coordinate an early fall flush of fresh, cool water to encourage Chinook salmon waiting in the Nanaimo River estuary to move upstream to begin spawning.

The public may notice an increase in water levels in the Nanaimo River, as the flow will increase from its present rate of about 5 cubic metres per second to 16 cubic metres per second over the course of the week.  Caution around increased water levels is advised for residents adjacent to the river and in-stream users such as boaters or fishers.

The pulse release will be noticeable starting Wednesday, October 1, and will taper off by the weekend of October 4-5.

Through careful management of the reservoirs, there is sufficient reserves available to be able to facilitate the pulse release, despite this year's drought.

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