Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program
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Project Summary

Project 2007-024-00 - Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
Project Number:
Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
This is a project that will provide subsistence and recreational fishing opportunities for the Coeur d' Alene Reservation until restoration activities can sustain a harvest level comparable to historical rates.
Proponent Orgs:
Coeur D'Alene Tribe (Tribe)
Starting FY:
Ending FY:
Implementation - Project Status Report
Province Subbasin %
Intermountain Coeur D'Alene 100.00%
Artificial Production
Harvest Augmentation
Focal Species:
Cutthroat Trout, Westslope
Trout, Rainbow
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 0.0%   Resident: 100.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
BiOp Association:

No photos have been uploaded yet for this project.

Summary of Budgets

To view all expenditures for all fiscal years, click "Project Exp. by FY"

Expense SOY Budget Working Budget Contracted Amount Modified Contract Amount Expenditures *
FY2017 (Previous) $64,614 $64,614 $64,614 $64,614 $66,576

General $64,614 $64,614 $64,614 $66,576
FY2018 (Current) $64,614 $64,614 $64,614 $69,584 $23,942

General $64,614 $64,614 $69,584 $23,942
FY2019 (Next) $0 $0 $0 $0

General $0 $0 $0 $0

* Expenditures data includes accruals and are based on data through 28-Feb-2018

Decided Budget Transfers  (FY2017 - FY2019)

Acct FY Acct Type Amount Fund Budget Decision Date
FY2017 Expense $64,614 From: General FY17 SOY Budgets 06/02/2016
FY2018 Expense $64,614 From: General FY18 SOY Budgets 07/17/2017

Pending Budget Decision?  No

No Project Cost Share

FY2017 0 %
FY2016 0 %
FY2015 0 %
FY2014 0 %
FY2013 0 %
FY2012 0 %
FY2011 2 %
FY2010 0 %
FY2009 13 %
FY2008 13 %
FY2007 13 %
Fiscal Year Cost Share Partner Total Proposed
Total Confirmed


The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, Complete, History, Issued.
Expense Contracts:
Number Contractor Name Title Status Contracted Amount Dates
76724 SOW Coeur D'Alene Tribe 2007-024-00 EXP COEUR D'ALENE TROUT PONDS Issued $64,614 8/15/2017 - 8/14/2018

Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):14
On time:6
Status Reports
On time:22
Avg Days Late:4

Earliest Subsequent           Accepted Count of Contract Deliverables
Contract Contract(s) Title Contractor Start End Status Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
34418 39320, 43892, 48066, 54378, 58342, 62469, 66072, 70126, 73483, 76724 2007-024-00 EXP COEUR D'ALENE TROUT PONDS Coeur D'Alene Tribe 08/2007 08/2007 Pending 41 71 6 0 11 88 87.50% 0
Project Totals 41 71 6 0 11 88 87.50% 0

Review: Resident Fish, Regional Coordination, and Data Management Category Review

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-ISRP-20120215
Project: 2007-024-00 - Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
Review: Resident Fish, Regional Coordination, and Data Management Category Review
Proposal Number: RESCAT-2007-024-00
Completed Date: 4/17/2012
Final Round ISRP Date: 4/3/2012
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
Final Round ISRP Comment:

Creel Census. The project sponsors should consider alternative creel census approaches to the proposed approach and attempt to get data on all three ponds, rather than just one. There may be benefits to a plan with tribal representatives/biologists conducting the creel census and interacting with the public. The project sponsors can get help through the Fish and Wildlife Program to develop a creel census as was done through the Lake Rufus Woods project with assistance from John Skalski. They also can confer with the Nez Perce Tribe on how they are monitoring their trout ponds.

The use of a remote camera to measure angler visits is interesting but might be perceived as too intrusive. Its use includes both social and scientific issues that would need to be addressed by the project sponsors. Also, based on reviewers’ experience, analysis of the digital tapes still requires many hours of post-processing time. In addition, it is not clear that data on how many fish were kept, or their sizes, could be measured from these tapes. Nevertheless, it could answer questions about angler use, at least for one pond.

Sterility of stocked fish. The sponsor’s response on sterility of triploid fish is useful to aid in understanding, although not fully satisfying. One in 20 fish is perhaps not sterile, and only a few are needed to breed elsewhere and start a new population. The cost of eradicating this invading population in the future would be very large, and large enough to call for expensive measures to prevent fish from escaping. The fact that other agencies are doing the same thing is not a good reason, although it is clear that escapes from private ponds are a much larger problem.

It seems clear that additional ponds could be used to offer more opportunities to more anglers, if the risk of release of reproductively viable fish could be addressed.

Qualification #1 - Qualification #1 - develop a creel census monitoring program
The sponsors should develop a creel census monitoring program as part of contracting. Please see comments for further suggestions.
Qualification #2 - Qualification #2 - Plans for evaluating escapement
Although the pond systems are sufficiently isolated from other water bodies that the probability of escapes is low, the ISRP is still concerned that the 95% sterility rates on the planted triploid fish leaves the potential for many viable fish that could produce in the wild and interact with native fish. The project sponsors should be on the watch for escape and the potential for introgression. Planning for this could be done through a risk assessment. See the programmatic comments on resident fish "master plans" and see the ISAB's Non-native Impacts Report's section on risk assessment (ISAB 2008-4, Page 45). Plans for evaluating escapement and an assessment of the potential for introgression should be presented and justified during contracting.
First Round ISRP Date: 2/8/2012
First Round ISRP Rating: Response Requested
First Round ISRP Comment:
  1. Provide assurances on QA/QC for triploidy in rainbows.
    • What percent of the fish are sterile, and how is this percentage verified?
    • Are the batches certified?
    • What is the process for ensuring triploidy?
  1. The response should justify the need for any additional ponds.

Overall, the project appears reasonable and justifiable, even if there is not yet fully adequate information on total usage and angler satisfaction. We would like to see testing data for the triploid fish to ensure that 100% are sterile, since many non-native species invasions have occurred from ponds like these when they are flooded. Other problems include pond banks breaking and humans moving fish illegally.

There is not sufficient information provided to justify additional ponds, and there is no design presented in this current proposal to address this issue, though a survey is mentioned as one method to obtain information on existing and potential demand for additional stocking. If so, a qualified independent contractor needs to be identified and asked to provide a survey design to answer the supply/demand question under a funding request for this current proposal.

The current stocking protocol of so many fish of large size could create demand that would never be met with wild fish, even if they were restored. It might be better to provide smaller fish and make clear to anglers that a similar catch rate is unlikely to occur in natural streams except under pristine conditions. 

1. Purpose: Significance to Regional Programs, Technical Background, and Objectives

The proposal is reasonably justified as a recognized substitution strategy to compensate for lost anadromous fish. The rational for providing meaningful harvest opportunities that take pressure off of native stocks is a reasonable approach and is widely used in various lakes throughout northern Idaho.

Significance to Regional Programs: The stated goal is to reduce angling pressure on native resident fish populations, which are bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout. However, the goal of providing anglers the opportunity to harvest 5 fish per trip, of which one is over 16" could create expectations that cannot be met in the future by wild fish, even when their populations are restored. Given this expectation, put-and-take fishing from ponds would be a required commitment of funds for the foreseeable future. 

This concern with angler expectation could be addressed several different ways. One way would be to plant smaller fish that more closely resemble the size of wild fish in the adjacent geographic area. This would perhaps also result in cost savings due to a shortened rearing duration for hatchery-produced fish. If this approach is not deemed socially acceptable, then anglers visiting the ponds can be educated using appropriate signage that wild fish will be smaller than the fish stocked in the put-and-take pond. Either way, the put-and-take fishing from these ponds would be a required commitment of funds for the foreseeable future.

Problem Statement: The problem statement is adequate.

Objectives: The same concern about the long-term effects of the objective applies, as described above.

2. History: Accomplishments, Results, and Adaptive Management (ISRP Review of Results)

The general activities and accomplishments since the project's inception are well described. The main shortcoming is of course the lack of an effective creel census to scientifically and quantitatively verify the benefits of the program to date. 

Accomplishments: Past accomplishments are adequately described.

ISRP Retrospective Evaluation of Results

The proposal’s Major Accomplishments section describes many improvements to the CDA trout ponds that maximize their ability to sustain fish and provide quality rearing habitat. Ponds were augmented with wells to supplement existing spring flows in 2009 and 2010 and were fitted with wind-driven aeration devices with electric backup to increase dissolved oxygen levels at critical times.

Public access has been improved at each site sufficient to allow handicap access, and portable bathroom facilities are rented and placed at each site during the main fishing season. The ponds are also routinely groomed and mowed to provide safe access for anglers. Ponds are also regularly monitored and policed for garbage and trash, which is collected for disposal.

The ponds have been regularly stocked with hatchery-reared rainbow trout dating back to 1996. Beginning in 2009, all planted fish have been triploid stock to further minimize the potential for unintended interactions with native trout. 

Stocked triploid trout have ranged from 1.5 – 2 pounds with some larger fish being planted in advance of fishing derbies, which are held regularly. These stocking levels have supported no less than 6,563 angler visits since 2004, ranging from 396 – 1,148 visits annually (Table 1). Total project expenditures during the period FY2007-2011 were $224,114. During this time 40,140 lbs of fish were purchased and stocked at a total cost of $144,504 ($3.60/lb) and the costs for administering the project and completing improvements at the sites totaled $79,610.

3. Project Relationships, Emerging Limiting Factors, and Tailored Questions for Type of Work (hatchery, RME, tagging)

Response concerning project relationships adequately explains that related projects are focused on habitat restoration and native fish restoration. The CDA Trout Ponds are used for substitution mitigation and provide angling opportunities while many streams where native fish are recovering are not presently available for fishing.

4. Deliverables, Work Elements, Metrics, and Methods

The deliverables call for stocking 1.5-3 lb fish, and some 3-5 lb fish. If future wild fish resources are unlikely to reach the 3-5 lb range, then it would seem wise to limit the number of these fish stocked so as not to create future expectations that are unreasonable. Public dissatisfaction, based on erroneous assumptions of potential wild fish size, could erode public support for present restoration activities. Likewise, more 1-2 lb fish could be raised for the same cost of feed, and provide more angling opportunity for less cost.

The sponsors propose to "evaluate the need for additional put-and-take ponds within the Project area to facilitate a more even distribution of stocked fish across the system, making harvest opportunities more widely available and allowing for greater flexibility in applying stocking strategies to meet the stated objectives for this project. The evaluation may include an angler satisfaction survey determined through direct mailings to the Tribal membership and fishing permit holders to better gauge fishing pressure/demand and a consideration of economics." This description is very vague. Angler surveys will need to be developed with care, since anglers can be predicted to ask for more and larger fish under most circumstances.

Although there may well be considerable additional demand for additional fishing waters that exceeds current supply, it is especially important that this determination be made using an objective, scientifically rigorous design. That is not provided in this proposal. High usage during a fishing derby, as clearly documented, does not get at the issue of overall demand. Ideally, since most fisheries biologists are not accustomed to designing such studies, it is typically best if such a study is designed and implemented by an independent contractor experienced in such supply/demand surveys. This might involve a survey of the populace at large and a creel census. It would be highly beneficial if a qualified independent contractor were contacted and asked to provide a survey design to answer the supply/demand question under a funding request for this current proposal.

4a. Specific comments on protocols and methods described in

The sponsors state, "A better indication of harvest was obtained prior to 2006 when ponds were periodically sampled with a beach seine using mark-recapture methods (Burnham et al. 1987) to estimate the number of fish remaining 30-45 days following stocking events with a known number of fish. During six of these sample efforts, estimated harvest averaged 90.4% of stocked fish (Peters and Vitale 1998; Lillengreen et al 1996, 1998)." 

This approach may be better than their other methods, but it has some real shortcomings. For example, it is not reasonable to assume that because the number of stocked fish has decreased by 90% over the time period, that 90% were harvested by anglers. Fish reared in hatchery ponds typically drop in numbers from predation and other mortality factors, often unseen by those managing the pond. This example underscores the need for a reliable creel census.

Another concern relates to whether all triploids stocked are actually triploids, and hence sterile. Has this been tested? If even a few are not sterile, then they pose a risk of invasion into the system.

Modified by Dal Marsters on 4/17/2012 12:50:40 PM.
Documentation Links:
  • Proponent Response (3/5/2012)

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-NPCC-20130807
Project: 2007-024-00 - Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
Review: Resident Fish, Regional Coordination, and Data Management Category Review
Proposal: RESCAT-2007-024-00
Proposal State: Pending BPA Response
Approved Date: 2/26/2014
Recommendation: Implement with Conditions
Comments: Implement with condition through FY2017. Sponsor to address ISRP qualifications in contracting.
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review

Legal Assessment (In-Lieu)

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-INLIEU-20090521
Project Number: 2007-024-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 10/6/2006
In Lieu Rating: No Problems Exist
Cost Share Rating: None
Comment: Trout ponds to replace lost fishery; assume this is for FCRPS and Avista will be providing additional ponds via relicensing.

Capital Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-CAPITAL-20090618
Project Number: 2007-024-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 2/27/2007
Capital Rating: Does Not Qualify for Capital Funding
Capital Asset Category: None
Comment: None

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-ISRP-20060831
Project: 2007-024-00 - Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 8/31/2006
Final Round ISRP Date: None
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria - In Part
Final Round ISRP Comment:
This proposal is for continuation of trout stocking for a put-and-take fishery in three existing ponds, for building and operating two new ponds for expanding the same function, and to conduct a "feasibility" study for a central holding/transfer facility for rainbow trout. The ponds are stocked annually with trout purchased from hatcheries. Expanded subsistence harvest is needed to partially mitigate for loss of anadromous fish and to make up for tightened restrictions on trout fishing in natural waters of the area.

This project appears fundable for all components except the feasibility study for construction and operation of the transfer/holding facility.

The information provided (in the response document) on use of the ponds for angling indicates that the recreation provided is a distinct asset to the community. Therefore, the overall project has much merit beyond purely scientific considerations.

The ISRP considered the general background and logic for the put-and-take fishing reasonable, but requested a response having sufficient detail to justify the new ponds. They asked that the response show an assessment of the benefits associated with the existing ponds, including fishing pressure (angler trips and hours), harvest estimate (fraction of the number stocked that are caught, number caught per hour fished), and economics (annual program cost per trout harvested and per pound of trout harvested). The response's year-by-year narrative on angling and population estimates helps toward understanding the history of the fishery. It also reveals the need for better monitoring measurements in the future. In addition to making proper harvest estimates, the method of population estimation should be more fully described in future proposals (the basic equation, gear and procedure), and the resulting estimates should be shown with upper and lower confidence limits. In future reports, the sponsors need to define "maximum benefit," show how they will "use information from the angler surveys to improve upon the existing program," and, explain how "we will use it such that we balance the expense fishing opportunity for the reservation community."

The ISRP asked for more information on proposed pond construction and on water supply and hydrologic analyses. The response to this was adequate.

The ISRP requested information to support the feasibility study for the envisaged central holding/transfer facility (for out-year construction and "designed to hold up to 50,000 lbs." of rainbow trout). The original proposal did not justify the possible need for such a facility. The sponsors did not respond. The proposal does not present a basic rationale for the facility and does not consider elementary issues. Holding fish in a transfer facility is likely to be a challenging management problem, considering the routine difficulties maintaining fish at high density, providing proper storage of food supplies, preventing and treating disease, etc. The sponsors have not said why present arrangements for supplying fish from hatcheries might be so inadequate as to necessitate a holding facility.

In addition, the proposal did not contain adequate description of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) for the project. It was proposed only to develop a plan for M&E. The ISRP requested an M&E plan covering design and procedures of creel census and data analysis—and response on some apparent technical problems. The response was adequate, but M&E methods should be improved (according to ISRP suggestions detailed in original review), and reporting of results should be more thorough in the future.
Documentation Links:

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2007-024-00-NPCC-20090924
Project: 2007-024-00 - Coeur D'Alene Trout Ponds
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Approved Date: 10/23/2006
Recommendation: Fund Pending Available Funds
Comments: Tier 2. 7th priority on Intermountain Province Tier 2 list. Fund at a level consistent with ISRP comments as funding becomes available.

Project Relationships: None

Name Role Organization
Virgil Watts III Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration
Jeff Jordan Technical Contact Coeur D'Alene Tribe
Paul Krueger (Inactive) Supervisor Bonneville Power Administration
Angelo Vitale Project Lead Coeur D'Alene Tribe
Michelle O'Malley Interested Party Bonneville Power Administration
Jennifer Lord Interested Party Bonneville Power Administration
Phyllis Johnson Administrative Contact Coeur D'Alene Tribe
Jennifer Snyder Interested Party Bonneville Power Administration
Justin Moffett Env. Compliance Lead Bonneville Power Administration