Another good turnout at the Dec. 15, 2011 meeting of the Horsefly River Roundtable indicated an interest in the topics of discussion.
An extensive update on the small-mouth bass situation in our watershed was presented by Ministry of the Environment lake specialist Lee Williston (see Page A7 for this report).
The technical committee had an excellent report submitted by Judy Hillaby, Barry Booth, and augmented by Steve Hocquard and Richard Case.
Six areas were identified as potential improvement projects, while two were dropped out of hand as being too expensive to repair, and not having a lot of habitat which could be improved even after huge expense.
Three areas of the Woodjam Creek, as well as Barker Creek, Kroener Creek, and Sucker Creek were identified for repairs.
It was agreed by the roundtable to commission Case and Hocquard to draw up an improvement plan for each project as well as potential costs for such, plus future benefits to the environment because of improved fish habitat areas.
There is a real incentive when there are benefits to be realized in both the short term and the long term.
It is imagined that folks will soon be able to get a trout dinner from some of these small tributaries of the Horsefly River, just like the “old” days.
It was generally agreed that Case and Hocquard were doing an excellent job for the roundtable.
It was agreed that more improvements will be needed on our Salmon Trail in order to prevent damage by local dirt bike operators who will not stop operating their motorbikes on our accessible trails.
There is funding available to improve river access for physically disadvantaged folk through a portable dock which could be removed before the seasonal floods.
There was a small discussion on the Salmon Festival being partnered with the Xat’sull First Nations through representative Jacinda Mack.
There will be much more coming up on this during the year.
We will attempt to have a report from Lee Heskith (Cattlemen’s Association) on any problems in our area he may be involved with, and in particular the annual road washout on the Beaver Valley road every spring, at our next meeting which will be held at the Horsefly library on Jan. 19.