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My family ranches on an upper Klamath tributary. Most summers I am there from May through July and again over the holidays. I often fish the section below Iron Gate Reservoir for rainbows and steelhead & hunt Klamath NWR. Very, very cool part of the country to visit if you get a chance. That being said, managing an entire watershed/drainage for one single species at the determinant of all other species and users is asinine. A couple of key points that go unmentioned in the article :

1. Increased mandated minimum water releases COPCO & Iron Gate would generally be considered good for the fishery. However, with drier winters, hotter summers and lower flows theses increased releases are sending water too warm to: provide adequate levels of DO, allow energy starved fish to migrate upstream, and create the optimum temperatures for disease.
2. The tribes from Happy Camp to mouth of Klamath do not care about the salmon & steelhead numbers for the same reason you do. They directly profit off their fishing - with many instances over the years of fish harvest and methods outside of their "allotted" or "agreed" upon regs. The tribes are allowed to gill net up to the middle of the river. Over the years there have been many rumors of encounters where the gill nets extended across the entire river.
3. These fish are not more important than the producers who have been irrigating from this watershed for hundreds of years. This region of OR/CA is a top ranching and ag producing region.
4. An estimated 80% of migratory birds on the pacific flyway stop over at the Tule Lake & Klamath NWR. Decreasing water storage, irrigation rights, and diversions will be the nail the coffin for an already troubled and extremely vital ecosystem.

Salmon < Every other user.
End Rant.
Very well said - seriously. 🧡
 
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