Bureau of Reclamation News Release: Water experiment to be conducted along the Colorado River while maintaining hydropower production this summer

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USGS/David Herasimtschuk

Information Launch Date: April 30, 2020

Call: Marlon Duke, 801-524-3774

Get in touch with: Robyn Gerstenslager, 801-524-3720

SALT LAKE Metropolis – From Might 1 by August 31, the Department of the Inside will perform a Macroinvertebrate Generation Move at Glen Canyon Dam. This experiment, also acknowledged as a Bug Flow, aims to boost egg-laying ailments for aquatic insects, which are the principal food stuff resource for endangered and indigenous fish in the Colorado River. This is the 3rd consecutive year for the Bug Flow less than the Glen Canyon Dam Long-Phrase Experimental and Administration Prepare.

All through the Bug Stream experiment, the Bureau of Reclamation will make qualified adjustments to drinking water releases from Glen Canyon Dam and Lake Powell. That altered release timetable will include reduced and steady flows during weekends, whilst weekday functions will keep regular flows to satisfy hydropower calls for. Weekday release rate hourly improvements will continue to be unchanged.

Aquatic bugs lay and cement their eggs to rocks, vegetation and other products close to the river’s edge. If flows are much too variable, drinking water concentrations may possibly drop down below in which eggs are laid, leading to them to dry out and die.

“Findings show that some aquatic insects are presently benefiting from the bug flows, which also advantages fish and other animals that eat them,” claimed Scott VanderKooi, main of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Grand Canyon Monitoring and Study Middle. “For example, our study implies that caddisflies, an very rare aquatic insect in the Grand Canyon more than the past quite a few decades, enhanced just about four-fold for the duration of the 1st yr of the experiment in 2018, prior to returning to pre-Bug Flows numbers in 2019. In distinction, non-biting midges, one more form of aquatic insect that is a critical food items supply for fish and other wildlife, may have elevated, and a 3rd year of Bug Flows really should aid validate this finding.”

Recreational fishing at Lees Ferry also improved in the course of Bug Flows, with anglers catching an common of 1-2 much more rainbow trout per working day through Bug Flow weekends, when flows were being low and constant, in contrast to weekdays when flows fluctuated.

“Our present experimental strategy in the beginning recommended two to three yrs of Bug Flows specified the complexity of the Colorado River ecosystem, which is consistently shifting,” mentioned Lee Traynham, Reclamation’s Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management System Supervisor. “We’ve previously figured out a ton about the ecosystem and have noticed various source advancements more than several yrs of experimenting with flows. We are thrilled to see how the ecosystem responds this 12 months.”

The choice to carry out this experiment was dependent on technological input and recommendation from a collaborative staff of scientists and technological gurus from federal businesses and states included in the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Administration Application. This crew consists of reps from the Division of the Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation, National Park Support, U.S. Geological Study, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Provider, and Bureau of Indian Affairs the Section of Energy’s Western Area Electrical power Administration Arizona Recreation and Fish Department, Upper Colorado River Commission and all seven Colorado River Basin States.

Experiments are designed to optimize benefits to the Colorado River ecosystem via the Grand Canyon, though assembly water shipping and delivery necessities and reducing destructive impacts to hydropower creation.

This experiment is anticipated to profit aquatic bugs and the fish, birds and bats that feed on them, even though offering worthwhile scientific data for potential final decision producing.

For far more information and facts about the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Method and circulation volumes under Glen Canyon Dam, remember to pay a visit to the next websites:

Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Software: https://www.usbr.gov/uc/progact/amp/index.html

Stream volumes for the Colorado River at Lees Ferry: https://www.gcmrc.gov/discharge_qw_sediment/station/GCDAMP/09380000

Colorado River Storage Project: https://www.usbr.gov/uc/rm/crsp/index.html

Citizen Science Mild Trapping in Grand Canyon: https://www.usgs.gov/centers/sbsc/science/citizen-science-light-trapping-grand-canyon?qt-science_center_objects=#qt-science_heart_objects

Science Behind the Bug Flows: https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/70170803

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