Co-operative Fisheries Mitigation on the Puntledge River
In 1913, the first hydropower facility was constructed in the Puntledge River on the east coast of Vancouver Island. This installation began eight decades of impacts on the salmonid fisheries resource resulting from dam construction and operations. While certainly not solely to blame for the observed declines in the famed Puntledge salmon and trout runs, hydroelectric development has contributed to decreasing production through habitat modifications and decreased accessibility to spawning grounds. This paper will trace the history of hydropower development in the Puntledge drainage, the development of early mitigative measures and the most recent attempts to address continuing problems.