Fall chinook salmon make comeback
BOISE— The Snake River’s fall chinook salmon are making a comeback.
There were just 78 wild chinook salmon counted at the Lower Granite Dam in 1990. Last year, more than 20,000 of the wild salmon were counted, and 75,846 wild and hatchery-born fall chinook total.
The Idaho Statesman reports the Nez Perce have pushed to supplement wild fish populations with salmon from hatcheries. The practice has been used for endangered salmon and steelhead in the Columbia River, and it’s been especially successful for Snake River fall chinook.
Idaho Power also has stabilized flows in the fall and spring to protect the salmon’s gravel nests, known as redds.
Jeff Allen of the Northwest Power and Conservation Councils says the number of redds went from 47 in 1990 to 6,000 last year.
Monument petitions gather support
The nonprofit Idaho Conservation League reports that as of Monday it had collected 3,650 signatures on a petition asking President Barack Obama to designate a Boulder-White Clouds National Monument.
ICL Central Idaho Associate Dani Mazzotta said almost all of the signers are from Idaho.
The group Sportsmen for Boulder-White Clouds has collected 523 signatures on a similar petition.
Bike Safety Rodeo set for May 24
The fifth annual Ketchum Police Bike Rodeo, designed to teach bicycle safety to children of all ages, will be held Saturday, May 24, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the parking lot of the Wood River Community YMCA, 101 Saddle Road.
Ketchum police officers will conduct safety tests and monitor an obstacle course, and mechanics from local bicycle shops will perform safety inspections on children’s bicycles. Volunteers from the Higher Ground Sun Valley adaptive sports program will also help during the event.
Children participating should bring their own bicycles and helmets. The Police Department will provide a helmet if a child does not have one. Snacks, juice and coffee will be available, and there will be prizes and safety items for bicycles.
“This is a great event, both to promote bicycle safety and to give children a chance to get to know their police officers,” Police Chief Steve Harkins said.
D.L. Evans Bank is helping to sponsor the event. There is no charge to participate.
For additional information, contact the Ketchum Police Department at 726-7819.
Mushroom permits available
Mushroom gathering for personal use will be permitted on the Sawtooth National Forest in the Beaver Creek Fire area on the Ketchum and Fairfield ranger districts and the Kelley Fire area on the Fairfield Ranger District.
Free mushroom-picking permits can be obtained at any Sawtooth National Forest office. People do not need to carry permits when they are gathering.
Commercial mushroom harvest will not be permitted in any of the burned areas on the forest.
Mushroom seasons vary depending on local weather conditions and elevations but generally last from May through September. Harvesters are allowed to pick 5 gallons per day until the permit expires.
This permit allows mushroom harvesting only on the Sawtooth National Forest. All mushroom harvesting is limited to hand picking—no heavy equipment will be allowed. Motorized travel is restricted to open roads and trails only.
Several road and area closures remain in place for the fire areas. According to a news release from the Sawtooth National Forest, it is anticipated that those closures will be revised as the season progresses.
For additional information, call the Ketchum Ranger District office at 622-0090 or the Fairfield Ranger District at 764-3202.
3 join Wood River Land Trust board
The Wood River Land Trust board of directors recently elected three new members.
Kathie Levison is an attorney experienced in real estate, tax law and estate planning, and has served on various boards of directors here and in Ohio.
Dan Smith is a longtime resident of Idaho and the Wood River Valley. He has served on various committees, including the Pocatello Historic Preservation Commission, the Idaho State University College of Science and Engineering Advisory Council and The Greenway Foundation, a privately funded organization creating nonmotorized trails in the Pocatello area.
David Woodward is an avid angler concerned about the health of the Big Wood River watershed. With a background in finances and investment, Woodward runs a small investment firm in Ketchum.
Water conservation talk offered
A lecture titled “How To Convert to a Drought-Tolerant Lawn Using Seed or Sod” is scheduled for Thursday, May 15, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Wood River Land Trust office in Hailey.
The event is the first session in a four-part series on water conservation sponsored by the Land Trust and the cities of Hailey and Ketchum.
Sun Valley LOT up in February
Despite a less-than-perfect snow year, Sun Valley businesses held steady, according to February local-option tax receipts.
LOT receipts for February totaled $112,073, as compared to last year’s $113,281.
Retail sales were up, compensating for a decrease in liquor sales and lodging receipts. Retail sales were up $58,000 from the previous February, a 13 percent increase. The jump followed a 9 percent decrease in January.
Liquor sales decreased by a robust 25 percent, or $5,640, compared to February 2013. Lodging receipts decreased by 11 percent, or $48,420, over the previous February.