Chinook salmon have lost more than 90 percent of their historical range in California due to the construction of dams and other fish barriers. Migrating
Chinook salmon have been well documented in Marsh Creek and FOMCW has led salmon monitoring tours for the public every fall for the last several years. The salmon's journey up Marsh Creek is cut short however, because a 6-foot tall concrete structure located approximately four and a half miles from the creek's mouth prevents salmon from reaching several miles of suitable spawning habitat in lower Marsh Creek and its tributaries. Known as the "drop structure," it is a physical barrier to migrating fish, even when the creek has plenty of water. This project will build a ladder over the drop structure so fish can access an additional seven miles of Marsh and Sand Creeks. If the ladder is built, Chinook salmon will be able to swim right through the City of Brentwood.
The project will also indirectly benefit other species by raising awareness of Marsh Creek. All around California, the annual return of the salmon is a significant event worthy of festivals and media coverage. These migrating salmon will present an excellent opportunity to educate residents of the many ways that their actions can benefit water quality, habitat and ecological health.
The East Bay Regional Park District Marsh Creek trail runs alongside the drop structure and the fish ladder will be in a highly trafficked and highly visibly location, improving the opportunity for education.
The Marsh Creek fish ladder project enjoys strong support and approval of the county flood control district, the City of Brentwood, the Department of Water Resources, and it is the top priority action of the Friends of Marsh Creek Watershed.
The construction of the Marsh Creek fish ladder is perhaps the most ready to implement of all stream and fishery restoration projects in East Contra Costa County.
A banner has been placed by FOMCW at the corner of Sand Creek and Fairview roads depicting a ladder design to show how much funding is needed to reach the goal amount.
Please join the FOMCW for a tour of Marsh Creek and see the future location of the fish ladder on Sunday, May 20 from 1 to 3 p.m. Meet at Creekside Park in Brentwood by the bridge over Marsh Creek closest to Crescent Drive.
To learn more about the Fish Ladder Project, how you can make a donation and for more information about the tour, visit www.fomcw.org or contact FOMCW coordinator, Anne Littlejohn, at firstname.lastname@example.org.