Heals Range creek restored to enhance salmon habitat

Lorraine Crinkley, FSE ~

A creek that runs through DND property is receiving much-needed restoration.

Tod Creek is a salmon-bearing stream located in Saanich, B.C., that flows north from Prospect Lake to Tod Inlet where it enters the ocean.

The District of Saanich has undertaken various restoration projects on Tod Creek and recently approached DND about restoring the portion of the creek that run through Heals Range.

The District of Saanich completed an assessment of Tod Creek, both upstream and downstream from Heals Range, and confirmed that old beaver bafflers were impeding water flow and fish passage.

Beaver bafflers are corrugated pipes installed through the base of a beaver dam that allows water to pass through the dam silently. Because the beavers can’t hear the running water they are unable to stop the flow and become discouraged and move on to another area. Although the beaver bafflers were successful in deterring beavers from Tod Creek, they were never maintained and have since clogged up with debris.

Reduced water flow through the creek due to unmaintained beaver bafflers and sedimentation causes an increase in water temperature and produces anoxic, turbid conditions that can be detrimental to salmonid species.

DND and the District of Saanich partnered to complete multiple improvements to the creek including the creation of terraced banks, the planting of riparian vegetation, the grading of the stream bottom, the installation of sediment controls, and removal of old beaver bafflers.

Once the beaver bafflers were removed, the banks were terraced. Riparian vegetation is scheduled to be planted in the fall to improve slope stability around the stream.

Originally the stream banks were steep and bank material was sloughing into the stream, which also impeded water flow and fish passage. Grading the stream bottom also helped provide consistent flow year round and reduced the opportunity for pooling water.

DND and the District of Saanich are hopeful the stream improvements made to Tod Creek will enhance salmon habitat and are assessing the feasibility of making further improvements to the section of the creek within Heals Range.

Filed Under: Top Stories

About the Author:

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Leave a Reply

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.