Winter Road Fisheries
During the summer of 1996 the Bilston Watershed Habitat
Protection Association undertook a project to enhance the fishery
potential of the Bilston Creek immediately south of the Winter
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|This is the worksite before any
alterations were begun. The area is overgrown with Canary
grass. During the winter flood season the bank is eroded
away and loose sand and silt is swept downstream to clog
up areas of gravel suitable for the native cutthroat
trout to spawn in.
|Standing on the Winter Rd. bridge looking
south downstream along Bilston Creek just before work on
the project started. On the left side the winter flood
waters erode the bank away, which is fine sand. This
material then is sent downstream to clog gravel spawning
beds. Originally this site meandered but as a flood
control project initiated by the Ministry of Highways the
stream channel was dreadged down and straightened,
exposing the loose sand. Much of the Reed Canary Grass in
the photo is floating on the water, having had the sand
originally around the roots washed away. Though the grass
overhangs provide shade to fish in the area during
summer, the overall effect is to reduce successfull
|Starting the excavation.
Here the machine is removing the loose sand back for
about 20 feet from the stream channel.
|Logs are placed into the
excavation. These are cedar about 20 feet in length and 8
to 12 inches diameter, laid as a continuous row. Every 8
to 10 feet a single log, also 20 feet long, having the
entire root mass still attached is placed. This root wad
will provide refuge holes for fish and add complexity to
the underwater profile.
|Once in place the logs are
covered with mixed sized rock ranging from small gravel
to 2 foot diameter nuggets. About 3 to 4 feet of overhang
is left exposed to provide shade. Soil is laid on the
upper bank and a number of larger shrubs were planted.
The area is seeded with grass and some is covered with a
protective woven straw mat to reduce predation from
|A number of water and marsh
plants were replaced in the stream channel. Plants
salvaged from the excavation and from other areas of the
stream were placed along the site.
|The upper bank area was
extensively replanted with native shrubs and small trees.