Please select your home edition
Maritimo 2023 S600 LEADERBOARD

Restoring coral and stream banks through the National Fish Habitat Partnership

by NOAA Fisheries 22 Jun 21:51 UTC
Near Talkeetna, Alaska, volunteers are hard at work planting native trees and shrubs to improve shoreline habitat for fish on Montana Creek, a popular trout and salmon-fishing stream © Trout Unlimited Alaska

In 2023, NOAA Fisheries funded several projects to restore habitat through the coastal National Fish Habitat Partnerships. Since then, partners have made considerable progress on this work, actively engaging local communities—including anglers—to make critical contributions to fish habitat conservation nationwide.

The projects demonstrate NOAA's commitment to restoring fish habitat and supporting access to sustainable saltwater recreational fishing, a popular pastime that boosts the U.S. economy.

Community-Based Coral Restoration in West Oahu, Hawai'i

Sponsoring Partnership: Hawai'i Fish Habitat Partnership

Over the past year, Kuleana Coral Restoration held and participated in numerous events centered around the importance of coral reef habitat and restoration for healthy oceans. They hosted three hands-on events and several outreach booths in West O'ahu, reaching more than 800 people. Attendees created or learned about the use of coral modules—composed of concrete and finger coral (Porites compressa) fragments—for fish habitat restoration. Additionally, the project team participated in a 3-day community event at Poka'i Bay Beach Park called Ho'akea Mauka to Makai, coordinated with Malama Learning Center and Polynesian Voyaging Society. Over 3 days, the event reached 400 students and others who live, fish, and recreate in the area. This work helped inspire students, school staff, and the larger West O'ahu community to become the next leaders in environmental stewardship.

Finally, through community input via dive surveys, Kuleana Coral Restoration also produced two baseline maps of the coral sites to be restored. These maps include both control and coral planting areas, and are used to assess project progress via coral cover estimates.

In addition to this project, see more information on NOAA’s restoration work with Kuleana Coral Restoration and the local community through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act.

Restoring Stream Banks with Anglers in Alaska

Sponsoring Partnerships: Kenai Peninsula Fish Habitat Partnership and Matanuska-Susitna Basin Salmon Habitat Partnership

Trout Unlimited Southcentral Alaska Chapter and partners hosted Plants for Salmon, a community riparian planting day in June 2023. This was the first phase of a collaborative project to restore vegetation and improve salmon habitat along Montana Creek (a tributary of the Susitna River) near Talkeetna, Alaska. More than 60 volunteers—including youth—planted roughly 200 native trees and shrubs, while the Knik Tribe cooked frybread for the volunteers.

Trout Unlimited is currently working with partners to add topsoil and complete additional seeding for sections of exposed rip rap. This will further stabilize the banks of this popular salmon-fishing river. A second planting day, planned this year, will continue improving 450 feet of habitat along these sections of Montana Creek.

This project was also made possible by the Susitna River Coalition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, and the Mat-Su Borough.

Restoration and Angler Outreach near Juneau, Alaska

Sponsoring Partnership: Southeast Alaska Fish Habitat Partnership

With the help of 28 volunteers, Trout Unlimited repaired a remote trail bridge used by hikers, bikers, trail runners, and anglers. This allows them to access Montana Creek (a tributary of the Mendenhall River) in September 2023. Project partners and volunteers re-vegetated the eroded stream banks by planting trees, shrubs, and native grasses. This increased the stability of the stream bank habitat and reduced future erosion.

In addition to plantings, Trout Unlimited re-routed an angler access trail that has caused erosion and reduced water quality. They also developed a set of five signs, placed along the creek. The signs include a map with angler access points, a history of Montana Creek with a focus on local indigenous peoples, and an outline of the project benefits and reduction of downstream impacts. Finally, a QR code placed on temporary signs at fishing access sites will allow anglers to complete surveys to collect information about favored access points and recreational fishing efforts. The surveys will inform future trail planning and improvements.

Related Articles

Chinook salmon and steelhead continue to decline
Willamette salmon and steelhead retain threatened status under Endangered Species Act Upper Willamette River Steelhead and Chinook salmon should remain listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, NOAA Fisheries has concluded in its 5-year review of the status of the species. Posted on 14 Jul
California steelhead maintain threatened status
Endangered Species Act review shows water use, habitat loss and climate change continue to recovery Northern California steelhead require continued protection as a threatened species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, according to a recent 5-year review by NOAA Fisheries. Posted on 12 Jul
Pacific Bluefin Tuna rebound to new highs
New stock assessment reveals largest recorded biomass since assessments began The recovery of Pacific bluefin tuna has achieved a major milestone—the species exceeded international targets a decade ahead of schedule. The rebuilding of Pacific bluefin tuna reflects a fisheries management success. Posted on 1 Jul
Temperature-driven movement of Alaska Pollock
Scientists use innovative technology to track northwest migrations Scientists use innovative technology to track northwest migrations in the late spring and early summer and southeast migrations in the winter. Posted on 29 Jun
Podcast: Tackling Sea Turtle Bycatch
Dive In with NOAA Fisheries The latest episode of Dive In with NOAA Fisheries highlights an international program that's taking a community-based approach to reducing bycatch of protected sea turtles along the Pacific coast of Mexico. Posted on 24 Jun
Strategies to optimize sablefish sustainability
Scientists & fishermen collaborated to identify management approaches for this commercial species Sablefish don't recognize political boundaries. These highly migratory fish move freely across the state and national lines within which they are managed. Posted on 18 Jun
Largest salt marsh restoration in the Northeast
NOAA and partners help river herring safely reach spawning grounds by restoring a degraded estuary After decades of planning, NOAA and our partners are moving forward with the Herring River Restoration Project, the largest salt marsh restoration effort in the northeast United States. Posted on 17 Jun
Yelloweye rockfish and bocaccio need protection
No change warranted in Endangered Species Act status of two rockfish species in Puget Sound/Georgia NOAA Fisheries has reviewed the current status of threatened Puget Sound/Georgia Basin yelloweye rockfish and endangered bocaccio, as required under the Endangered Species Act. Posted on 16 Jun
Podcast: Teaching Kids to Fish and Love the Water
Dive in with NOAA Fisheries NOAA Fisheries and partners are working with communities in South Carolina to get kids involved in fishing and environmental conservation. Posted on 13 Jun
Frustrating experience for fishermen in Atlantic
Noaa fisheries continues to work with partners and fishermen to find solutions to shark depredation Shark depredation is the partial or complete removal of a hooked fish by a shark directly from an angler's line before the line can be retrieved. It is a growing concern for recreational anglers. Posted on 11 Jun
Maritimo 2023 S-Series FOOTER