Is it possible to have a Flood and drought in the same year? Yes. Absolutely. As we know, the lack of rain in the boundary has created drought like conditions. That said, drought restrictions from the province have not yet been put in place for this area. The Kettle, the West Kettle and the Granby rivers, however, are all on the provincial watch list which means that they are being closely monitored and water restrictions could still be enforced this fall.
A major concern that the province has is fish kills and the long-term sustainability of fish populations. Rainbow trout have been studied over multiple years and the fishery has deteriorated. Findings conclude that fewer and smaller rainbow trout are found throughout boundary rivers. Causes include decreased habitat for the fish, decreases in flow, increases in water temperatures, and overfishing. As a result of fish population studies, more stringent fishing regulations were put in place in 2015 for rainbow trout. In summary: fishing in the Kettle and West Kettle is catch and release only, no fishing from July 25 and August 25 and a live bait ban from Apr. 1 – Oct. 31. In the Granby upstream of Burrell Creek, the bait ban is from Apr. 1-Oct. 31 with a daily limit of 1 trout. Downstream of Burrell Creek, catch and release only and a bait ban from July 1 – Oct. 31. These new regulations are designed to ensure future generations are afforded the same recreational opportunities that we enjoy and appreciate today.
Shawn Lockhart releasing rainbow back to the river (Credit Shawn Lockhart).
Click Fishing Regulations to obtain the most up to date regulations for the boundary region. Alternatively a hard copy can be obtained at Service BC.
– Jessica Mace is the coordinator of the Kettle River Watershed Management Plan for the RDKB, and is working with the Kettle River Watershed Authority to implement recommendations from the plan. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
There has been major flooding in the Boundary Region. The Kettle River Watershed Authority’s key messages are:
1. River bank instability – Avoid the water’s edge since the banks are over saturated and are compromised. In the town of Cashe Creek near Kamloops, a fire chief went missing on Friday morning after checking water levels in a flooded area. Click on Cache Creek to read more.
2. Water Levels – Although the water levels have receded over the past 24 hours, there is a risk that levels will rise again later this week. See river level forecasts posted on the Regional District of the Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) site at RDKB. There is an emergency response team set up at the RDKB office in Grand Forks. If you have any questions/concerns you can contact the response team by calling 1-888-747-9119 or 250-442-3628.
3. Flood preparation – The RDKB emergency response team has recommended some steps to take for flood preparation. Go to this link for more information – Flood Preparation
4. Water contamination – Floodwater is not river water. Avoid playing in or drinking the flood water since the water may be contaminated. Go to this link for more information – Floodwater
Please join us in Greenwood on Tuesday April 11, 2017 for a public/stakeholder meeting. Take this chance to give input on the Kettle River Watershed Management Plan implementation and hear from our presenters including our special guest Natasha Overduin from POLIS.
Please follow this link or contact the coordinator to register for this free event (this will help us figure out how many people will be eating dinner).
Oliver M. Brandes and Rosie Simms from the Polis Water Sustainability Project co-authored an opinion that was published in the Vancouver Sun on August 25, 2016. They touch on the failed Fraser River Salmon run and discuss the decline of river water quality globally and the need to protect our waters. Click on the following link to read more: http://vancouversun.com/opinion/opinon-protect-water-our-economy-communities-and-quality-of-life-depend-on-it