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Fraser River environmental watch report - July 21, 2022

Fraser River environmental watch report - July 21, 2022
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Ten-day daily forecasts of lower Fraser River temperature and flow conditions as well as current conditions throughout the Fraser basin are updated bi-weekly from roughly late-June until mid-August. These short-range forecasts are generated using river temperature and river flow forecast models (Hague and Patterson 2014).

The latest research on Pacific salmon freshwater migration suggests there are population-specific differences in temperature and flow tolerance thresholds (Eliason et al. 2011). These differences likely relate back to the variability in the average river environmental conditions experienced by salmon beginning their river migration at different times of the year and along different paths (Farrell et al. 2008). Despite these differences, there are also species-wide thresholds that will result in migration difficulties for most populations of Fraser River sockeye salmon. We provide species-level thresholds as a guide to interpreting the potential effect of current and forecasted river temperature and flow conditions on returning salmon. However, in general, fish historically returning to the Fraser River in the mid-summer will be more tolerant of higher temperatures than those fish returning in the early or late summer or early fall.

Current temperatures: July 20, 2022

Location Daily mean Historic mean Year range
Stuart River at Fort St. James 17.7 17.8 2000 to 2021
Stellako River at Glenannan 15.8 16.9 2011 to 2021
Nautley River at Fort Fraser 18.0 18.3 2007 to 2021
Nechako River at Vanderhoof 16.4 17.2 2000 to 2021
Nechako River at Isle Pierre 17.1 18.9 2006 to 2021
Bowron River at Box Canyon 13.3 N/A New
Fraser River at Shelley 11.5 14.2 1994 to 2021
Quesnel River at Quesnel 11.7 14.7 2000 to 2021
Fraser River at Marguerite 14.6 17.2 2015 to 2021
Chilcotin River at Hanceville 14.6 N/A 2019 to 2021
Fraser River at Big Bar Creek 15.1 NA 2006 to 2021
Fraser River at Texas Creek 15.4 17.1 2006 to 2021
North Thompson River at McLure 13.5 13.9 2006 to 2021
South Thompson River at Chase 14.1 17.2 1994 to 2021
Thompson River at Ashcroft 14.8 16.5 1995 to 2021
Thompson River at Savona 14.5 N/A 2021
Fraser River at Qualark 15.6 16.6 1950 to 2021

Fraser River discharge at Hope

Critical levels for fish passage through Fraser Canyon:

Graph: Fraser River discharge at Hope
Long text version

Graph showing Fraser River mean water discharge at Hope. Graph shows 2022 observed and predicted mean daily discharge, 20 year historic median and 20 year return period (1912 to 2021). Trend lines show a steady rate then a gradual decline starting mid-June.

Fraser River water temperatures at Hope

Graph: Fraser River water temperatures at Hope
Long text version

Graph showing Fraser River mean water temperatures at Hope. Graph shows 2022 observed and predicted temperatures, highest observed (1950 to 2021) and historic mean (1950 to 2021). Trend lines show an increase from June to a high in August, and a decline to lows in September.

Fraser River discharge above Texas Creek

Graph: Fraser River discharge above Texas Creek
Long text version

Graph showing Fraser River mean daily discharge above Texas Creek. Graph shows 2022 observed and predicted mean daily discharge, historic median (1952 to 2021) and 20 year return period (1952 to 2021). Trend lines show a gradual decline from June to September.

Fraser River water temperatures above Texas Creek

Graph: Fraser River Water temperatures above Texas Creek
Long text version

Graph showing Fraser River mean daily water temperatures above Texas Creek. Graph shows 2022 observed and predicted temperatures, highest observed (1996 to 1998, 2002 to 2021) and historic mean (1996 to 1998, 2002 to 2021). Trend lines show an increase from June to July, then a decline in August.

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