Porter Creek: A Case Study in Multi-Agency Management, Research, and Applications

Russian River Salmon and Steelhead Monitoring Program
Publication Date

Created for the 2019 SRF conference by Weston Slaughter, Gary McFee, Mariska Obedzinski, Andrew Bartshire, and Will Boucher.  Porter Creek, a 7.5 mi² tributary of the lower Russian River watershed, has been identified as a priority stream for endangered Central California Coast coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) and steelhead trout (O. mykiss). Years of monitoring data indicate that low streamflow impedes salmonid smolt passage and survival of summer-rearing juveniles. In recent years, numerous partners have been engaged in a variety of efforts to better understand and restore critical ecosystem functions within the watershed in order to support salmonid recovery. Efforts have ranged from coho salmon releases to intensive biological and environmental monitoring, making Porter Creek a model of multi-agency collaboration. All of this was made possible by gracious land owners granting access to the creek, and support from E & J Gallo Winery for entering into a 20-year water rights agreement pledging water for conservation use.