The Idaho Department of Fish and Game installed baffles in a large culvert to improve steelhead passage in Big Medow Creek.
Reporters with the Municipal Water Leader magazine interviewed Shane Scott, owner of SSA Environmental, on his experience with the Flexi Baffle. The Flexi baffle is a flexible weir that is installed in culverts to improve fish passage. In this interview they discuss the history of the Flexi Baffle, some current applications and the future of SSA Environmental.Municipal-Water-Leader-10-9-23-SSA-Env-5
Another successful Flexi Baffle installation. We worked with the City of Surrey, B.C. and students with the Salmon Habitat Restoration Program (SHaRP) to implement the largest culvert rehabilitation project in North America. A large concrete flume on the Bon Accord Creek, a tributary of the lower Fraser River, has blocked salmon from accessing important salmon spawning habitat for many decades. We worked with City staff to develop a Flexi Baffle installation plan to increase water depth and slow water velocity to create conditions much more conducive to salmon passage.
SSA Environmental staff then worked to train SHaRP students and project managers to install Flexi Baffles at predetermined intervals through the flume. Students isolated the project area with barrier nets. They then installed Flexi Baffles using concrete drills and wedge anchors.
Students encountered masses of blackberry briars and tough access conditions, but they persevered. And the results speak for themselves!
Students will now monitor fish passage this fall as salmon begin their spawning migration.
Here are the Flexi Baffles after a significant rain event. Note the resting areas between each Flexi Baffle.
The IDFG used genetic testing to evaluate the success of installing baffles in a culvert on the Potlatch River in the Clearwater Basin. The state installed baffles in a culvert in an effort to help anadromous steelhead access historic spawning habitat. Researchers used genetic monitoring to observe how in just two years the composition of salmonids above the culvert was moving from the resident rainbow trout to the ocean-going life history of steelhead. Steelhead were again able to access historic spawning habitat.