Project B.10 Open Painters Riffle Spawning Grounds in the Upper Sacramento River

Project is Complete

In 1986, Dick Painter, a DFG biologist, developed and constructed a side channel salmon spawning riffle area in the Upper Sacramento River on the North side of Redding. The channel was highly productive for a number of years in providing spawning area for 100 to 200 additional redds. In a 2011 survey of the area, Dave Vogel, the GGSA science consultant, discovered that gravel had filled the channel in, preventing spawning. The area could be easily restored for spawning by simply removing the gravel pile which blocked the entrance, something the Golden Gate Salmon Association called for. The plan was approved by the fish agencies and permits were obtained. The Glenn Colusa Irrigation District volunteered their manpower and equipment to do all of the heavy gravel moving and grading. In December of 2014, construction was completed and the site was again opened for salmon spawning and rearing activity. The benefits are substantial. The area now supports an additional area for 100 to 200 redds for three separate runs of salmon: the fall run, the late fall run and the endangered winter run. The yield will be up to one million additional fry annually to the fishery.

Photos on the restoration of Painters Riffle