Connected Waters2022-02-01T12:44:20-08:00

Reconnecting habitats,

restoring wild salmon

Reconnecting habitats,restoring wild salmon

Connected Waters

Connected Waters is our campaign to reconnect 1500 kms of salmon habitat currently blocked by outdated flood infrastructure. This campaign was launched in 2016 and has already made some enormous strides.

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About Connected Waters

The Fraser River and its tributaries, home to the largest collection of salmon runs in the world, have been heavily degraded through urbanization and agriculture.

Most of the flood infrastructure, installed to protect homes and farms from flooding, also block salmon from accessing waterways that once provided valuable overwintering and rearing habitat.

Connected Waters aims to re-connect these blocked waterways to the Fraser River, restoring salmon habitat by upgrading to fish-friendly flood infrastructure, and undertaking restoration works like riparian plantings and removing invasive species.

Restoring these waterways not only supports salmon populations, but also benefits local citizens by providing thriving natural spaces for recreation and learning, and can even improve flood protection for the surrounding communities and farms.

Katzie Slough

Watershed Watch works with the Katzie First Nation and community members in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge to restore the Katzie Slough. Our work focuses on community engagement and science-based advocacy at the local, provincial and municipal levels. We are working with a local farmer along the Katzie Slough to restore his riparian zone to good habitat.

Camp-Hope Slough

Watershed Watch is working with local First Nations, residents and community advocates in Chilliwack through a collective we call the Friends of Camp-Hope Slough. The aim of the group is to bring the Camp and Hope Slough systems back to good water quality and quantity so that the community can enjoy this historic waterway. We’ve hosted canoe tours, clean-ups, and provided support with monitoring and habitat restoration.

Resilient Waters Prioritization Study

We have secured funding from the BC Salmon Restoration and Innovation Fund, with our partners at Tides Canada, to assess over 100 flood control structures and blocked waterways in the lower Fraser, and to consult with First Nations and other experts to find the highest priority projects for fish-friendly infrastructure upgrades and habitat restoration. These priorities will inform future spending from the 5-year, $140 million fund.

Disconnected Waters

1,500 km of potential salmon habitat impacted by 156 flood control structures

119 additional structures control farm land, urban or industrial areas

This interactive atlas identifies flood obstructions including details on structures present, fish presence and habitat quality. It is a living atlas and is being updated as we complete field work.

Flood control infrastructure impacting potential salmon habitat in the lower Fraser River floodplain

These data are up to date as of March 26, 2018. However, WWSS is continuing to work with municipalities and landowners to confirm types and locations of flood control infrastructure, including whether the infrastructure is fish friendly.

To explain how flood control structures can help or hurt salmon habitat, we’ve created a series of animations showing how different types of floodgates and pump stations work.

Find out more about fish-friendly flood control

Connected Waters = Connected People

Want to get involved in our habitat restoration projects? Sign up for our volunteer newsletter to find out about upcoming opportunities.

Help support the Connected Waters campaign by donating today!

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