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Press Release
New Strategy to Improve Delta Smelt Population Surpasses Expectations
New Strategy to Improve Delta Smelt Population Surpasses Expectations
31 August 2016

Sacramento, CA – California Natural Resources Agency today announced that initial monitoring results of a new strategy used to address impacts to smelt caused by drought in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta) demonstrate that the plan surpassed expectations. Through a collaboration with Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District, Reclamation District 108, Reclamation District 2035, Knaggs Ranch and Conaway Ranch, state leaders were able to boost plankton blooms, Delta Smelt’s primary food supply, in a select section of the Delta. By transporting the plankton blooms to areas where Delta Smelt commonly occupy, the strategy demonstrates the ability to improve food supply availability and quality for Delta Smelt – a demonstrable benefit delivered without increased outflow to the San Francisco Bay.  

“These initial successes are a good sign, and we need to continue exploring new, smart strategies that deliver proven results for Delta Smelt populations. This was a measure to help smelt that made smarter use of the available flows by having more water access the food-rich Yolo Bypass. It shows that the solution isn’t always to release more water from reservoirs, but to cooperatively and effectively manage our resources.” 

Terry Erlewine

General Manager

State Water Contractors