Xeni Gwet’in Caretaker Area – Habitat Restoration & Enhancement

The 2008 project represents a substantial step forward for the crew by implementing interventions that were identified over the previous two seasons of extensive assessment and documentation (Holmes 2006, 2007). Xeni Gwet’in is mindful of the positive influence their pristine watersheds have on the Fraser River drainage as a whole.

During the course of this project stream enhancement work was carried out to remove log jams to allow adult salmonid access to spawning areas and scouring of the stream bed for spawning opportunities. Restoration work was conducted in three key lake areas: Choelquoit, Tommy’s Meadow and Abelachez. Field crew restored water delivery to drainages to restore habitat for both kokanee and rainbow trout stocks which have historically provided a food fishery for the Xeni Gwet’in. Off channel habitat restoration was completed at Taseko River and at the Onion Lake road crossing.

The 2008 field season allowed the Xeni Gwet’in field crew through the guidance of Cariboo Envirotech Ltd. an opportunity to further develop their knowledge and skills in managing the fisheries resources in the Xeni Gwet’in Caretaker area.

Final report was prepared and project outcomes were presented to the community on January 21, 2009 and at the Xeni Chilko meeting on Friday, March 6, 2009. The report will be distributed to Xeni’s tribal council, Department of Fisheries and Oceans and Ministry of Environment.