For steelhead to recover, the young must get past Bradbury Dam.
Paul Wellman

The Santa Barbara City Council authorized spending up to $100,000 to hire a water rights attorney to help negotiate a more robust Steelhead trout recovery program for the Santa Ynez River, a major source of the South Coast’s water supply. Currently, the Cachuma Dam is a major obstacle to Steelhead returning to prime spawning grounds upstream. By hiring a water rights specialist, the council is hoping to persuade both the federal government-which owns the dam-and the other municipalities that depend on the dam for their water to cooperate more. More specifically, councilmembers are hoping to gain consensus for some program-like trap-and-truck-that helps get the endangered fish up and over the dam according to the rhythms of their natural spawning cycles.


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