Back The Brookie Update

Wanted to update folks on some projects in the works regarding brook trout in WV. It looks like some tangible momentum is getting going with Back The Brookie. On behalf of Lee Orr, Chris Shockey and others involved with BTB I appreciate everyone’s patience.

  • Mountaineer Chapter of TU was recently approved for an additional $10,000 for work on Big Run in the South Branch watershed (Home Waters Initiative). This is actually breaking news and the official details are not released yet.
  • P. Pendleton Kennedy Chapter of TU was also approved for $10,000 for brook trout work in the Home Waters Initiative – Potomac Headwaters
  • Kanawha Valley Chapter of TU has been working with Meade-Westvaco and WVDNR to formulate some habitat work on Big Laurel of Cherry River in Nicholas County. This is private land owned by Westvaco and that company is wishing to put some money into habitat improvement for the native brook trout in that greater watershed. WVU researchers are evaluating the limestone needs for these waters and the DNR will begin liming them soon. In addition, research is being done for the addition of large woody debris (LWD) that helps with holding cover as well as introduction of organics for improving benthic life (primary productivity). There is some concern about using riparian LWD (dropping trees near stream canopy for LWD purposes, which is counterproductive) so details are still being ironed out. KVCTU/Back The Brookie will likely be assisting in some mid-week stream surveys possibly including electrofishing and possibly some labor with habitat work. Longterm access for anglers is something that KVCTU has brought up, it is still in the works.
  • US Forest Service has plans for large scale habitat work in the Williams River watershed including some tree planting on Little Laurel, improving fish passage on Black Mountain Run (culvert) and some other projects. Back The Brookie is monitoring approval and initiation of these projects.
  • Blennerhasset Chapter of TU in conjunction with USFS and WVDNR has donated funds to gravel an old forest service road in Greenbrier County for a tributary of Anthony’s Creek. This creek is slated for limestone treatment for acidity and the brush on the old road is being cleared currently by Dept. of Corrections inmates before graveling and then liming can begin.
  • Chesepeake Energy has expressed the possibility of funding some work for brook trout habitat in their working jurisdictions. KVCTU has been actively looking for viable projects to present for funding. I will personally be canvasing some streams in their areas for potential projects in the next few weeks. Possibilities include an open dump cleanup on a tributary of the Middle Fork River, limestone funding, Trout In The Classroom funding, or riparian tree planting activity. Initially we wanted to work for reconnection via culvert removal, but it appears that the funding will not be sufficient for this purpose. We are still working on that.
  • KVCTU Habitat Team has also gained extra annual funding for additional limestone fines funding. We are discussing that with WVDNR to designate which stream to fund currently.
  • The USFS has a fencing project on a grazing alotment along a native brook trout stream in the Elk River watershed ready for funding. I will be meeting with Mike Owen of the USFS very soon to tour the area.

As you can see, there are a few irons in the fire. Hopefully we can use these projects to stir up even more enthusiasm for native brook trout conservation amongst our own and particularly in the local arenas. If you have an idea for a Back The Brookie project in WV, please pass it along to me anytime for discussion. Multiple funding sources are available.



About wvangler

Bamboo rodmaker. Prognosticator. Fly Angling Purist S.O.B. Dabble in snowboarding/mountain biking/backpacking. Right Wing Environmentalist. Food Junkie. Hillbilly. Intellectual Geek.

Posted on February 13, 2008, in flatulancy. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I take it Rick forgot to tell you that the PPKTU grant money has been mostly spent on Pabst Blue Ribbon.


  2. How about more info on the fencing project. With the new fencing now available I think this can have a enormous impact on our streams.

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