This stream habitat restoration project is located at the upper most mile of a spring creek tributary of the Big Lost River near Mackay, ID.  This is the fourth project of its kind that IMA has performed for the property owner. This portion of the creek was subject to years of agricultural impacts that resulted in degraded form and function. The goal of this project was to increase the available in-stream habitat for trout and mountain whitefish while maximizing angling opportunities. A commercial fish hatchery is located adjacent to the project.  The hatchery possesses a non-consumptive water right and can divert a significant portion of the stream flows around part of the project area.  The project design was engineered to function at a variety of flow regimes to account for the hatchery operation and seasonal fluctuations in spring output.  The geology of this stream system required IMA to develop unconventional restoration techniques to maximize habitat while maintaining channel stability.  During the permitting process, it was discovered that archeological remains were present within the project area.  IMA worked with the appropriate state and federal agencies to navigate the situation and adhere to permitting constraints. The issue was resolved with archeological site investigations, project design revisions, and construction monitoring by a professional archeologist.  Efficient communication and construction management allowed the project to move forward without delay. 

 Fall 2014 - Before - the wide, slow creek offers minimal trout habitat

Fall 2014 - Before - the wide, slow creek offers minimal trout habitat

 February 2015 - Post-Construction - the creek is narrowed by point bars, with pools, riffles, and log grade-controls installed

February 2015 - Post-Construction - the creek is narrowed by point bars, with pools, riffles, and log grade-controls installed

 Summer 2015 - After - revegetation is complete 

Summer 2015 - After - revegetation is complete 


 Fall 2014 - Before - creek is wide and uniform

Fall 2014 - Before - creek is wide and uniform

 Summer 2015 - After - creek is narrowed, contains distinct riffles and pools, and is surrounded by lush riparian vegetation

Summer 2015 - After - creek is narrowed, contains distinct riffles and pools, and is surrounded by lush riparian vegetation