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Anybody familiar with this restoration effort?
Historically, steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), a salmonid species native to western North America and the Pacific coast of Asia, runs were present in the SLR River until the 1940’s. Prior runs were reportedly sufficient enough to provide a major food supply for the Luiseño Indians as late as the 1890’s and early 1900’s (USFWS 1998). The influx of changes that have occurred in the watershed has disrupted the natural hydrologic conditions in the watershed, thus nearly extirpating steelhead from this system.
Current efforts to restore the San Luis Rey River focus on the implementation of watershed management guidelines developed through the San Luis Rey Watershed Management Project and the Watershed Urban Runoff Management Plan (WURMP) for the San Luis Rey Watershed. The WURMP identifies tasks related to urban runoff that all jurisdictions in the SLR Watershed are committed to implementing in order to improve water quality. The San Luis Rey Watershed Council (2000) also identified twelve priority issues with consideration to long term planning within the watershed. Some of these issues are as follows: water quality and quantity, heavy industrial uses, invasive plant species management, flood plain management and flood plain warning, and wetlands protection and restoration (see Restoration Programs, pp. 73-74 for the entire list of issues). Furthermore, the Mission Resource Conservation District (RCD) has taken an active role in invasive plant species management along the SLR River and its tributaries and in conjunction with the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) has worked with local landowners on Best Management Practices (BMPs). Steelhead recovery in the SLR River is consistent with many of these and other ongoing activities intended to protect and/or restore ecosystem functions within the watershed.
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