Critical Habitat Designations - Page 2 - Fly Fishing Forum
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Old 08-26-2005, 09:00 PM
SSPey SSPey is offline
loco alto!
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Oregon
Posts: 97
flytyer, if you assume that I know memorize all that's been written here before, that's quite an assumption So I did go back on your recommendation and I found a helpful summary post by Juro.

What is critical habitat?

Under the federal Endangered Species Act, critical habitat is defined as: (1) the specific areas within the geographic area occupied by a federally listed species on which are found physical and biological features essential to the conservation of the species, and that may require special management considerations or protection; and (2) specific areas outside the geographic area occupied by a listed species, when it is determined that such areas are essential for the conservation of the species.

Given that definition, the current reversal of critical habitat designation is clearly against the spirit of the law. And this administration is responsible for that reversal, plain and simple.

I don't see that I flamed you in all three posts, but I did challenge you to back up your claim. A claim that you still have not addressed adequately. Can you provide any marginally tractable documentation that indicates that MOST of the critical habitat in question does not have, and did not have, anadromous fish due to natural barriers? Your case studies are informative, but they hardly speak to "most" of the habitat in question.
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Old 08-26-2005, 11:20 PM
Active Member
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 498
The Pastor

New Pastor comes to the Church (bear with me) First Sunday, and each sunday after he gives his sermon..... the same sermon as the week before! At first the congragation is attentive, then curious, then anoyed, and finaly downright P.Oed.
When approached by the leadership about this behaivior, Pastor says " I keep giving the same sermon untill everyone gets it!"
Just for shirts and grins tonight I looked at the stats for the forum.....we had 23 guests, 10 more than members signed on. Somewhere out there in cyberspace is someone who did not catch last springs posts on this. Somewhere out there is someone who dosen't even know that there is such a thing as Critical Habitat!
Somewhere out there is the young man or woman that is going to carry the torch for us when were to old and grumpy.
That is the person that I hope when someone asks "Why are we cleaning up-taking care of-writing our congressmen/women about" this stream-river-lake-roadside- camping area- chose one, they turn and say "Because I read somewhere that people cared enough, and we should to"
This discussion, pro and con, back and forth, between caring individuals is what inspires, is what gets things done. WE are the cop on the corner for the fish, and you know, it's alright to be in that position whatever our views!
Each time we get our dander up about enviromental matters, I learn something.
I know I dont have all the answers, but I gain more from each debate, which helps me build a more informed, wellrounded attitude towards the opposition, who suprisingly have some good points themselves.....albeit not very often
Why Bother?
Cause it's the right thing to do.
How simple is it?
It's as simple as saying "Enough already!" at the very least until things can be debated and sorted out.
In my research, I am seeing a much broader initiative here than meets the eye!
Its not just about the ESA, or Salmon, or the Sky-Blackfoot-Quinny, but about the system as a whole! And there are those out there that would just as soon see us roll over, play dead and close our eyes to all this.
If we did?
You would awake from your slumber some day, grab your rod, and find that the river of your youth is just that.....
A fond memory!......

We cannot let Ctritical Habitat be brushed aside like so much dirt, in the name of someones "Progress"
Dont forget.... Salmon was the first to step forward!

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Old 08-27-2005, 12:45 AM
flytyer flytyer is offline
Pullin' Thread
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: NW Washington
Posts: 3,346

I agree wholeheartedly that we need to have healthy discussion on topics such as this, which are of great importance to the survival of the anadromous fish in the PNW. At the same time, we need to also recognize that the inclusion of non-anadromous bearing streams or areas of anadromous bearing streams that did not historically support anadromous fish in a critical habitat area may not be the best use of a critical habitat designation since it can't be clearly demonstrated in an empirical manner that not designating them as critical habitat will be detrimental to the fish.
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Old 08-27-2005, 05:38 AM
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juro juro is offline
Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Steelhead country|striper coast|bonefish belt
Posts: 20,594
Stepping back, it's clear we all share a common love of the wild places and beautiful finned creatures that inhabit them, not the least of which are the salmonids and perhaps most of all the anadromous wild species...

however stepping back even further I think there are some 'undercurrents' at play rooted in political, social and philosophical foundations that are at odds here.

We are all entitled to an opinion, but we should be cautious not to push the underlying agendas with our brothers toward the same cause lest we alienate each other in pursuit of the same goal.

And that goes for me as well. To be brutally frank, I have no confidence whatsoever that the conservative branch of our government can make reasonable decisions that favor the welfare of our environment, any success has been entirely by accident and the fodder of calculated chest beating via propaganda while the long history of anadromous salmonid failures dating back to the very inception of the nation are perhaps the single most shameful example of man's failure to respect his surroundings in the history of salmon and steelhead. This begins with the American atlantic salmon and goes downhill from there.

Let's compare the actions and beliefs of two Secretaries of the Interior - Bruce Babbitt and James Watt... one fought and won to remove the illegal Elwha River dam that will eventually liberate one of the most abruptly incapacitated rivers on earth, rendering a run of 100 pound wild OP kings extinct. He did so with the genuine hope that the Elwha can run wild more than four miles from sea and rebound from it's century of imprisonment. Damn the special interest groups.

Watt however arrives to meet with fellow Slade Gorton (son of Gortons of Gloucester, MA) to discuss ways of opening exploitation of the last stands of old growth, now 97% depleted in Washington state and 0% having been renewed (old growth in WA is 700-1000 years old, do the math). After having shut down the national park system, proposed derailment of critial clean water and air programs and alienated even his own party peers with his ways in DC, he comes to WA not to admire our starkly beautiful places but to eyeball them for dollar value, no doubt in cahoots with Plum Creek, Intalco, BPA, and every old boy network out there.

However, I really do try to be careful not to push these beliefs (despite being easily substantiated with facts) into the discussion when at face value we all agree to protect the natural treasures. The means by which we might pursue, or the rationalization of success may differ - but with objective non-partisan cooperation both sides of the line can save wild anadromous salmonids from the heinous fate they have suffered thus far.

If we do push undercurrents we are no different than gear vs. fly guys who won't pull together for a cause. IMHO the key is objectiveness, and holding back on those extra posts that are clearly rooted in bi-partisan beliefs.

As administrator of this site, just as Watt said he would err on the side of exploitation verses preservation I will say "I will err on the side of the proven party", but will make every effort to avoid any need to even consider that by remaining objective and I hope we all can try as well.

IFFF Certified THCI @ 2005
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Island Hopper, Guitarist, Incurable Dreamer
and Founder, Worldwide Flyfishing Forum
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Old 08-28-2005, 12:55 AM
Active Member
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 498

I for one am not here to alienate anyone. If I have done so I am sorry.
I am here because I am passionate about the sport and all that it encompasses. Before "we" came here to the NW or whatever other area a person might call there Home Waters, the system that you see before you each time you go fishing was in place.
It was not "Designated Critical" at that time...there was no need.
Most of that free flowing stuff is gone now, so are most of the fish that went along with it. We are left now with a small fraction, my vote goes for saving as much as I can.
It has alot to do with stewardship. Man throughout the years hasn't done a real good job with that one I'm afraid.
That says to me that I should try harder.
That says to me that there's always more to be done.
I consider myself on the same side of the bench as my brothers here on the Forum, as well as in the communities where we reside as individuals. But I am glad that we don't try to all share the same seat....truly then, we would accomplish nothing.
I am thankful for your perspective, as well as all the others who bother to stand up for the fish. Perhaps there is something more for me to learn from this discussion regarding critical habitat.

I fished the Molala today. This river is under incredible strain. Trash everywhere, smoldering campfires left un-attended, etc.
Yet through all this, The Fish go on, "Seemingly" un-affected, although I know better. Nature can take alot of abuse.....but not forever, and every acre we can hold on to is one more for the future.
Next time you go to the shore, bring along a trash bag and spend a few picking up.
Next time there's a meeting for cleaning up the waterway in your neck of the woods....GO!
Next time someone wants to take away more land from the already dwindling supply, stick up for the fish!
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