The Bay Foundation, working with the California Department of Parks and Recreation and the California Conservation Corps, removed a two and a half foot tall check dam and protruding metal pipe from Arroyo Sequit in the western Santa Monica Mountains. The dam’s removal will allow upstream passage for the federally endangered steelhead trout. The anadromous steelhead trout relies on lower energy upstream sections of our local rivers and streams to mate and lay eggs. It has been estimated that due to damming and other human impacts that southern steelhead trout have lost 80 – 95% of their historic habitat ranges.
The removal of these three barriers has opened up an additional four and a half miles of steelhead and other fish habitat.
Additionally, TBF helped remove two Arizona Crossings, which were also barriers to fish passage. The removals of all three barriers will allow for free sediment movement which will reduce scour to the stream channel and banks and reduce overall sediment loading in the system. The project will also remove water contact and the associated pollutants from vehicles, which will now be able to cross the Creek on bridges elevated well above the water level in the stream. The new, wider bridges will also minimize conflicts between pedestrians and motor vehicles that use the road simultaneously; this will provide additional safety to park visitors.
View a time lapse video of the check dam’s removal HERE.