USGS Washington Water Science Center
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The Issue: The Confederated Colville Tribes are concerned with maintaining and enhancing endangered summer steelhead fish stocks in the Okanogan River and its tributaries. One Okanogan River subbasin of particular interest is Bonaparte Creek where almost 50 percent of the summer steelhead captured in 2008 were of natural rather than hatchery stock. The Colville Tribes are working to ensure enough water in the lower 1.6-mi of Bonaparte Creek below the natural fish-passage barrier at Bonaparte Falls to sustain spawning and rearing by these summer steelhead.
How USGS will help: In cooperation with the Confederated Tribes, the USGS will identify springs in the lower Bonaparte Creek basin that contribute water to Bonaparte Creek and help sustain summer-fall baseflow in the lower 1.6-mile reach of the creek. The Tribes will use the streamflow, discharge from springs, and surface-water/groundwater exchange information for lower Bonaparte Creek basin to develop possible alternatives to enhance summer and early fall streamflow.