Fishlake National Forest
North Fork of North Creek Fish Barrier
Small Project Proposal
USDA Forest Service
Fishlake National Forest
Beaver Ranger District
Beaver County, Utah
The Beaver District Ranger of the Fishlake National Forest (FNF) is proposing to construct a fish barrier on the lower end of North Fork of North Creek to improve the security of an existing native Bonneville cutthroat trout (BCT) population. The purpose and need of the proposed fish barrier is to protect BCT in the North Fork of North Creek from invasion by non-native trout species. The barrier would support the objective of the interagency Bonneville cutthroat trout Conservation Agreement and Strategy (CA/CS), of which both the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR) and Forest Service are signatories. Past, current and planned projects under this CA/CS were instrumental in preventing the need for listing of BCT as a threatened species. BCT currently occupy about 13% of their historic habitat in the UDWR southern region. Implementation of this project will also help the FNF meet fisheries improvement targets.
The North Fork of North Creek has always held remnant BCT, however lower portions of the stream have had invasion by rainbow trout. Native trout restoration and enhancement projects have taken place in the past to restore BCT. To help ensure effectiveness of these restoration efforts and fully protect the conservation population of BCT, construction of a fish barrier is needed.
The Fish barrier would be built using large rock and boulders trucked in from the storage area off Forest Road 591 to the barrier site using a front-end loader. The barrier would be about 25 feet across with a 5 foot drop on the downstream side. A concrete plunge pad would be poured below the barrier drop. A small amount of native riparian and upland vegetation would need to be removed for barrier construction and access. Smaller riparian shrubs or young trees would be replanted around the structure as needed. All disturbed sites would be blended with the natural topography and if necessary reseeded with a district approved seed mix. No changes in existing land management activities are proposed or required for this fish barrier project.
The proposed action is a routine activity as defined in FSH 1909.15 Section 32.2 and fits Category 7: “Modification or maintenance of stream or lake aquatic habitat improvement structures using native materials or normal practices.”
For maps and detailed information about the project visit: www.fs.usda.gov/usda/project/fishlake/landmanagment/projects
Public Involvement - The USDA Forest Service (USFS) is no longer required to offer notice, comment, and appeal opportunities pursuant to 36 CFR or 36 CFR for categorically excluded projects. However, such legislative ruling does not limit the public’s ability to comment on USFS projects activities.
By soliciting public comments the USFS ensures that a wide range of interests and perspectives are considered and that site specific natural resource concerns are identified and meeting the NEPA requirements for public scoping with an opportunity to comment prior to a decision by the responsible official.
Comment Process- Please submit your detailed project specific comments within 14 days of this publication in The Beaver County Journal. Comments received, including names and address of those who comment, will be considered part of the public record for this project, and may be made available for public inspection.
Comments can be submitted to the Beaver Ranger by facsimile, hand-delivery, post office mail delivery or email. Emailed comments need to be in Word (.doc or .docx), rich text format (.rtf), text (.txt), or portable document format (.pdf) and addressed to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please address post office mail comments to: Kathy Johnson, District Ranger, Beaver Ranger District, P.O. Box E, Beaver, Utah 84713. Hand delivered comments are welcomed at the Ranger Station front desk on weekdays, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm, excluding holidays. If submitting comments via FAX send to: 435-438-1242.