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Grant Awardee: 
The Nature Conservancy Alaska Chapter

Habitats Restored/Protected: salmon spawning and rearing habitat, eelgrass beds, estuary.  

Location: Klawock, Southeast Alaska, U.S.

Project Period: July, 2009 through September 2012

Partners: Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, City of Klawock, Craig Improvement Association, Ducks Unlimited, Keta Engineering, Klawock Community Association, Klawock Hatchery, Klawock Heenya Corporation, Klawock Watershed Council, NOAA Fisheries, The Alaska Trollers Association, USDA Forest Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Goals: Improve salmon habitat and population with a long-term goal of restoring fisheries to ​historic levels to meet the needs of local residents and others. 

A Vision for Project Success

The village of Klawock is reached by a narrow isthmus, and a paved and raised causeway that crosses the Klawock River estuary. Historically, the isthmus was an unpaved, low water crossing that was under water at higher tidal stages, which allowed out-migrating fish to access eelgrass habitat north of the causeway, and in-migrating fish to move directly up into the Klawock River to spawn. A highway was constructed over the isthmus in 1964. The elevated roadbed blocked all hydrologic connectivity between the Klawock River lagoon and Klawock Bay, and created a barrier to fish. The construction of a fish friendly, concrete culvert beneath the highway in 2011 allowed salmon to pass beneath the road for the first time since its construction in 1964. Initial monitoring results suggests that the culvert is already accomplishing its short-term goal, as adult and juvenile salmon have been observed and documented migrating to and from the river via the new passage.

Read more about this and other salmon habitat restoration in Alaska at TNC's website. 

View a slideshow of the monitoring of Klawock Estuary restoration

Download the Project Final Report

Disclaimer: This web site was prepared by The Nature Conservancy under award [number] U.S. Department of Commerce. The statements, findings, conclusions and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Nature Conservancy or the U.S. Department of Commerce.