Water is essential for life and the redwood ecosystem is important for local water supplies. During the summer months, fog covers the California coast and the Santa Cruz Mountain range. The water from the fog is caught in the leaves of the trees, and then it trickles down to the ground, seeps into the aquifers and into the streams.
Years ago, steelhead, trout and Coho salmon were abundant in our coastal streams. Today the Coho are dwindling in number. If we can ensure that the Coho increase in numbers, this will also mean that other animals are doing well.
There is a relationship between deadwood and healthy waterways. The San Vicente Stream in the area of Davenport, California is a healthy stream. But it needed some help so that the Coho and other fish could survive and prosper. When there isn’t any dead wood in a stream, the water flows very fast.
Then the baby fish are swept out to sea. For the fish to survive, they need calm pools and deep holes.
The researchers dragged large logs, 14,000-40,000 lbs, into the stream at angles, dug trenches, bolted the wood into place. Over time this will slow down the water creating pools and backwater areas. The baby fish (fry) will have deep cold pools and calm slow water where they can grow. Happy fish equal more fish. When all of this works, other critters also do well. (I didn’t take any of these pictures. I found them on the internet. Thank you contributors.)
When everything works, we end up with a healthy forest environment. This will be a place where our children will be able to enjoy parks and trails. They will be able to picnic and camp out and enjoy beautiful scenic vistas.