Otis Bay Ecological Consultants designed and constructed a fish barrier to prevent non-native trout present in lower Silver Creek from accessing approximately 8.7 miles of potential Bonneville cutthroat trout (BCT) habitat in the upper Silver Creek basin. On site, rock-filled gabions were used to construct a fish barrier according to parameters developed by the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW). Careful pre-construction site reconnaissance resulted in minimal disturbance to the surrounding environment and greatly minimized the on-site time required for construction.
Although the BCT is not listed as a threatened or endangered species under the Endangered Species Act, it has been petitioned for listing twice in recent years. This Silver Creek fish barrier furthers extensive restoration efforts that have been implemented by the Nevada Bonneville Cutthroat Conservation Team. Throughout the BCT’s historical range in eastern Nevada, efforts have been made to remove threats of non-native trout (brook, brown, and rainbow), and the Silver Creek barrier is critical to those efforts. Silver Creek is within the BCT’s historical range and represents the only stream in the north Snake Range that currently contains non-native trout species.
Construction was completed in October 2012. Re-seeding of disturbed areas occurred November 2012.