Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Low Snowpack

This year, El Nino has brought warm, dry weather for much of the early winter and snowpack in the mountains around the Northwest is about 50% of normal. Snowpack is critical because it ensures adequate instream flows throughout the summer. During low water freshwater habitats are less productive for rearing juveniles and adults salmon and steelhead may have an elevated risk of prespawn mortality. Snowpack is particularly critical for the Columbia Basin where runoff speeds passage of outmigrant fish through the hydrosystem to the ocean, and temperatures behind many of the dams often exceed 70 F during low water summers. More information in the Columbia Basin Bulletin:


1 comment:

gribble said...

All jokes aside hmm better start to think of what rivers to close season on! How much snow do you guys normally get this time of year untill the melt? I remember you guys/gals had record high temps this past tear really hurting the natural aquifers!