Following the successful completion of phase one of the Mission Creek restoration initiative, partners are now working on a two-year plan to guide future restoration efforts within lower Mission Creek.
The new plan will have input from federal and provincial governments, Regional District of Central Okanagan, City of Kelowna, Okanagan Nation Alliance, Friends of Mission Creek and Central Okanagan Land Trust.
Other monitoring plans for 2020 include assessing the effectiveness of the setback dike and floodplain, and observing potential changes within the main channel and restoration structures resulting from spring runoff.
Crews will also be assessing the effectiveness of the large boulder clusters positioned in lower Mission Creek in 2019; designed to improve the rearing habitat for rainbow trout, kokanee, and various other indigenous fish species.
Monitoring the ongoing success of the initiative will ensure the continuation of ecological, recreational and economic benefits, says project co-ordinator Steve Matthews.
“Since dike realignment and floodplain construction in 2015 and 2016, we’ve been focused on refining the newly established fish and wildlife habitat areas each year so they function more naturally. Kokanee and rainbow trout monitoring this year will provide important information about habitat benefits resulting from the restoration works, and the impacts from flow-generated changes within the creek channel.
"This work in combination with development of a broad based conservation and restoration plan for Mission Creek will be key to directing future MCRI efforts."
Primary funding for this year's activities has been provided by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and Okanagan Basin Water Board.
For more information, visit the MCRI website.