Draft Imnaha Subbasin Summary November 30, 2001 Prepared for the Northwest Power Planning Council Subbasin Team Leader


Tribal and State (Nez Perce Tribe and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife)



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Tribal and State (Nez Perce Tribe and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife)

The vision of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is that “Oregon’s fish and wildlife are thriving in healthy habitats due to cooperative efforts and support by all Oregonians” (ODFW 2000). The vision for the Imnaha subbasin among state and tribal resource managers is improved basin habitat for the enhancement and productivity of wild spring chinook salmon, summer steelhead, native resident trout, and numerous wildlife species (NPT et al. 1990). ODFW and Nez Perce Tribe developed the following objectives and strategies cooperatively in 1990 as part of the System Planning effort for the NWPPC (i.e., Imnaha Subbasin Plan).

Habitat Goals


  1. Restore, maintain or enhance instream habitat to levels necessary to support and/or recover anadromous and resident fish to harvestable levels in Wallowa County.

  2. Restore, maintain or enhance terrestrial habitat to conditions necessary to support and/or recover terrestrial vertebrates in Wallowa County.



Habitat Objectives

Objective 1: Protect existing anadromous fish habitat by preventing further watershed degradation in the form of water quality, quantity, and instream habitat.

Objective 2: Restore optimum habitat (temperature, flows) for all life history stages of anadromous salmonids.

Objective 3: Protect, restore, and maintain suitable habitat conditions for all bull trout life history stages.

Objective 4. Protect and maintain remaining high quality riparian and upland habitats.

Objective 5. Maintain or increase wildlife species diversity.

Objective 6: Pursue habitat protection through local, state, and federal agency coordination.



Habitat Strategies


Strategy 1. Grazing: Develop livestock control measures to include limited grazing periods, reduced stocking rates, temporary or permanent stream corridor fencing, and management of riparian pasture systems.

Strategy 2. Mining: Require mining and dredging operations to meet county, state, and federal regulations. Ensure that the Department of Environmental Quality, Environmental Protection Agency, and Oregon Division of State Lands jointly develop guidelines, standards, and enforcement procedures for protection of streambed conditions under provisions of the 1987 amendments to the Clean Water Act, Title III – Standards and Enforcement, Sections 301-310, and 404. Prevent mining activities in or near critical fish habitat.

Strategy 3. Road Building: Enforce Forest Service Practices Rules requiring adequate maintenance or closure and rehabilitation of roads. Social, economic, wildlife, fisheries, and recreation factors must be considered and positive road management plans developed to close unnecessary roads and return them into resource production where possible. Examine alternative road construction sites in areas classified as having high erosion and slope failure potential.

Strategy 4. Timber Harvest: Develop a system for classifying and mapping forestlands susceptible to erosion, including slope failures, streamside landslides, gully erosion, and surface erosion. Such a system should take into account the potential for damage to downstream resources in addition to the potential for on-site erosion.

Strategy 5. Timber Harvest: Require the USFS, BLM, and ODF to increase monitoring of timber harvest activities for compliance with rules, guidelines, and recommendations for habitat protection.

Strategy 6. Pesticide and Herbicide Use: Encourage that chemical treatments from federal, state, and private individuals for plant and insect control adjacent to waters in the Imnaha River Subbasin will not endanger fish life and aquatic organisms or damage watershed and riparian systems.

Strategy 7. Water Quality and Quantity: Require the EPA, ODEQ, BLM, and USFS to establish monitoring programs required by the Clean Water Act (Sections 301-310), the National Forest Management Act, and the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA).

Strategy 8. Encourage the ODEQ, EPA, and DSL to enforce guidelines, standards, and procedures for protection of streambed conditions under provisions of the Clean Water Act (1987 amended)

Strategy 9. Continue landowner involvement and cooperation in protecting, restoring, and enhancing riparian systems and watersheds.

Strategy 10. Encourage the DSL to develop procedures and provide manpower to monitor compliance with fill and removal permit conditions

Strategy 11. Develop acceptable methods of erosion control for necessary bank protection, through agency and landowner cooperation.

Strategy 12. Apply for instream water rights or recommend additional sites for adoption of minimum streamflow by the Water Resources Commission.

Strategy 13. Require all diversion inlets be properly screened and maintained as required by the Fish Screen Law (1987) and ORS 509.615.

Strategy 14. Monitor irrigators to ensure all diversion structures minimally provide adult and juvenile passage as required by state law

Strategy 15. Obtain funding for landowners through state and federal agencies to implement more efficient irrigation methods and develop water conservation practices benefiting landowners and instream flows.

Strategy 16. Promote, purchase, lease, exchange, or seasonally rent water rights for selected fish habitat during critical low flow periods

Strategy 17. Support purchase, lease, or easement of habitat areas from willing landowners.

Strategy 18. Develop a comprehensive plan for reintroduction, regulation, and management of beaver in suitable sites in the Imnaha subbasin for the specific purpose of using beaver to restore streamflows, improve fish habitat, and improve watersheds

Strategy 19. Support and expand existing watershed programs

Strategy 20. Develop a system of riparian natural areas associated with critical fish habitat throughout the basin

Strategy 21. Protect, enhance, and restore wildlife habitat in the subbasin.

Action 21.1. Determine and monitor abundance and distribution of wildlife species to identify and prioritize wildlife habitat restoration needs in the subbasin.

Action 21.2 Conduct periodic comprehensive habitat and biological surveys to identify and prioritize wildlife habitat restoration needs in the subbasin.

Action 21.3. Implement wildlife habitat restoration projects in the subbasin.

Action 21.4. Acquire or lease lands with priority habitats to permanently protect wildlife habitats in the subbasin.

Action 21.5. More actively manage lands set aside for wildlife, such as CRP and CREP, to increase species diversity on those lands.

Action 21.6. Decommission unnecessary roads to reduce harassment of wildlife and encourage more uniform use of available wildlife habitat

Action 21.7. Manage habitat to meet state management guidelines for upland birds and game mammals.

Strategy 22. Protect federal and state threatened, endangered, and sensitive wildlife species.

Action 22.1. Increase enforcement of laws pertaining to wildlife.

Action 22.2. Provide protection for federal and state threatened, endangered, and sensitive wildlife species in all resource management plans.

Action 22.3. Enforce state and local land use regulations designed to protect wildlife habitats.






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