Malibu Creek Steelhead Restoration Project Rindge Dam Removal
Fish Passage Policy and Technology: Proceedings of a Symposium
American Fisheries Society
Malibu Creek, located in Los Angeles County, California, is home to the southernmost run of self-propagating steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). This run has adapted to drastic changes in flow, water quality, and population expansion occurring within the Los Angeles basin, 25 miles to the south. The California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG), with the support of a diverse group of organizations, agencies, and individuals, is coordinating an effort to prevent this run of steelhead trout from becoming extinct as a result of degraded and insufficient habitat. The most formidable obstacle to their survival is the presence of a 100 foot high, thin arch, concrete dam located 2.5 miles upstream from the Pacific Ocean, which retains approximately one million cubic yards of alluvial sediments. This paper describes the importance of the southern steelhead trout, presents a brief history of the dam and previous suggestions for fish passage, the current project status and its future direction to include varying options for disposal of the stored sediments, difficulties encountered proceeding with the project, and the environmental and economic concerns regarding removal of Rindge Dam.