Alameda Creek Alliance

 

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Restoring the Northern Watershed

Working with Zone 7 Water Agency to assess instream flows for migratory fish and promote fish passage and habitat restoration projects in Livermore and Pleasanton

The headwaters of the Arroyo Mocho tributary of Arroyo de la Laguna, through the Mocho Gorge along Mines Road, has been identified as potential suitable spawning and rearing habitat for steelhead trout. Arroyo Mocho was a historic migration route and habitat for steelhead trout. Many small potential fish passage barriers have been identified in Arroyo Mocho between Arroyo las Positas in Pleasanton and the Mocho Gorge. The Alameda Creek Alliance has been lobbying for fish passage at these barriers and connection of the Mocho Gorge habitat with the Bay.

The Alameda Creek Alliance has intervened in the local water rights permit for Zone 7 Water Agency, over concerns about adequate flows and habitat for steelhead trout. Zone 7 is undertaking an environmental and hydrologic analysis to assist in reaching resolution on our protest. Zone 7 is studying instream flow, critical fish passage locations, potential habitat utilization, and opportunities for habitat enhancements in the arroyos.

Zone 7 Water Agency is planning for multiple fish passage projects in Arroyo Mocho, Arroyo del Valle, and Arroyo de la Laguna as part of their Stream Management Master Plan projects in Livermore and Pleasanton. The Zone 7 plan proposes about a dozen restoration and enhancement projects which will remove or modify fish passage barriers, restore natural stream meander, plant riparian vegetation or replace non-native vegetation with native plants, create wetlands and other habitat for sensitive species, and install educational kiosks. Although there appear to be a few traditional flood control projects that involve hardening stream banks in already-altered stream reaches, most of the proposed flood protection and erosion control projects appear to be quite visionary and take environmental and habitat consideration into account.

A few restoration and fish passage projects have been completed; multi-agency projects to stabilize stream banks and restore lower Arroyo de la Laguna in 2006 and 2011; the removal of Granada Fish Barrier from Arroyo Mocho in 2007; the replacement of a LLNL stream crossing with a bridge in 2004; and the installation of fish ladders on Arroyo Mocho and Arroyo Las Positas in 2003.