Province Summary


Deschutes Subbasin Summary

The Deschutes Subbasin stretches over 10,700 square miles of land in central Oregon. Covering eleven percent of Oregon»s land area, the Deschutes River subbasin is larger than other Oregon watersheds, except the Willamette. The subbasin extends west to the crest of the Cascade Mountains, south to lava plateaus, east into the Ochoco Mountains and to the plateau between the Deschutes and John Day Rivers, and north to its confluence with the Columbia River. Its length reaches 170 air miles from peaks in the Cascade Mountains to where it joins the Columbia River, 205 miles from the Pacific Ocean. In width, it extends up to 125 miles from the eastern slopes of the Cascades to the western slopes of the Ochoco Mountains, and over the high desert landscape that covers much of the subbasin’s interior.

The headwaters of the Deschutes River and most major tributaries receive large amounts of precipitation, but much of the subbasin lies in the rain shadow of the Cascade Mountains and is sheltered from western Oregon»s heavy rainfall. Average annual precipitation amounts to more than 100 inches on the eastern slopes of the Cascades, mostly as snow, but drops to only 40 inches in the Ochoco Mountains and 10 inches at lower central locations.

Land ownership in the Deschutes Subbasin is about 51 percent public, 7 percent Tribal, and 42 percent private. The federal government owns and manages most public land in the subbasin, including three national forests, one national grassland and one Bureau of Land Management District. Most of the public land lies in the upper watershed. Lands of the Warm Springs Tribal Reservation extend over approximately 641,000 acres and lie mostly in the lower Deschutes River subbasin. Lands in private ownership cover much of the lower and interior of the subbasin. Many of these private lands support agricultural, forest and range uses.

Population growth in the upper and middle Deschutes watershed continues at a tremendous rate. Deschutes County continues a 20-year trend of leading the state with the highest population growth. The county»s population grew about 54 percent between 1990 and 2000 and growth is projected to continue. Crook and Jefferson counties, in the central and eastern Deschutes watershed, have also experienced higher levels of growth than other areas in the state. Population growth continues at a much slower rate in Wasco and Sherman counties in the lower Deschutes watershed.

Source: Deschutes Subbasin Plan

Status and Trends of Focal Species in Deschutes Subbasin
 
Species ESU MPG Population Biological Objective (s) Biological Status Federal Status Data / Charts
Fall Chinook Middle Columbia      Subbasin Plan Objective :
13,000-16,000 natural adults311
 
Adult Counts
2016: 1,074 adults (Pelton Dam - natural)98
Not Listed Status & Trends
Spring Chinook Middle Columbia      Subbasin Plan Objective :
2,600-2,800 natural adults; 2,200-2,300 above Warm Springs National Fish Hatchery and 400-500 in Shitike Creek311
 
Redd Counts
2015: 72 redds 156
Not Listed Status & Trends
Pacific Lamprey       Subbasin Plan Objective :
None
 
Adult Population Estimate (Lower Deschutes)
2017: 24,017adults 506
Species of Concern Status & Trends
Sockeye       Subbasin Plan Objective :
None
 
Unknown Not Listed No Data
Summer Steelhead Middle Columbia  Cascades Eastern Slope Tributaries  Westside, Eastside, Crooked River (extirpated)  Subbasin Plan Objective :
Westside - 4,500-5,000 natural adults (plus 1,600-1,850 in areas not currently accessible)
Eastside - 2,400-2,900 natural adults
Crooked River - 700-1,000 natural adults311
Recovery Plan Criteria :
1,000 natural adults each for Westside and Eastside populations302
 
NOSA Estimate
2016: Deschutes River (westside) - 472 spawners474
Deschutes River (eastside) - 1,942 spawners474
Adult Counts (Pelton Dam)
2016: 2,507
Hatchery - 2,443 adults 192
Natural - 64 adults 192
Redd Counts (natural)
2015: 570 redds (natural) 193, 205, 206
2012: Buck Hollow Creek - 28 redds (mixed)204
Threatened Status & Trends
Bull Trout Lower Deschutes (Within Deschutes Recovery Unit)    Shitike Creek, Warm Springs River, and 3 Metolius River populations   Draft Recovery Plan Criteria :
1,500-3,000 adults distributed among 5 or more local populations312
 
Redd Counts
2015: 129 redds 158
Adult Counts (Pelton Dam)
2016: 13 adults 207
Threatened Status & Trends
Redband Trout       Subbasin Plan Objective :
1,500-2,500 fish greater than 8 inches per mile, Pelton Dam to Shearers Falls; 750-1000 fish greater than 8 inches per mile below Shearer Falls311
 
No information since 2000 Species of Concern No Data
    
View abundance data for Deschutes Subbasin
 
Hatcheries located in Deschutes Subbasin
**Hatchery data will be updated in 2016**

Hatchery / Acclimation Pond Hatchery Info Releases / Returns Program Reviews(APRE / HSRG / HGMP / USFWS) Map
Fall River Fish Hatchery View View   View
Oak Springs Hatchery View View View View
Pelton Ladder Hatchery View     View
Round Butte Hatchery View View View View
Warm Springs NFH View View View View
Wizard Falls State Fish Hatchery View View View View
 
Hatchery Releases and Returns to Deschutes Subbasin358
**Hatchery data will be updated in 2016**

Some releases into subbasins may be from hatcheries located in other provinces and subbasins. Hatchery releases of anadromous fish, within the geographic range of an ESU/DPS, are listed accordingly.
 
Hatchery / Acclimation Pond Species ESU/DPS Released in 2009 Returns to Collection Facility in 2009 Data as of
Fall River Fish Hatchery Brook Trout 30,398 8 / 30 / 2010
Cutthroat Trout 92,093 8 / 30 / 2010
Rainbow Trout 177,365 8 / 30 / 2010
Oak Springs Hatchery Cutthroat Trout 19,212 8 / 30 / 2010
Rainbow Trout 677,783 8 / 30 / 2010
Summer Steelhead Middle Columbia River Steelhead DPS 143,156 8 / 30 / 2010
Round Butte Hatchery Spring Chinook 814,233 2,809 8 / 30 / 2010
Summer Steelhead Middle Columbia River Steelhead DPS 1,098,631 4,204 8 / 30 / 2010
Warm Springs NFH Spring Chinook 580,897 8 / 30 / 2010
Wizard Falls State Fish Hatchery Brook Trout 54,950 8 / 30 / 2010
Cutthroat Trout 53,389 8 / 30 / 2010
Kokanee 429,510 8 / 30 / 2010
Rainbow Trout 1,010,072 8 / 30 / 2010
Spring Chinook 20,345 8 / 30 / 2010
Recovery Status for ESA-Listed Salmon and Steelhead in the Deschutes Subbasin376

Updated : 5/27/2010

Species Population Abundance Threshold Mean Abundance Major Spawning Area Growth Rate Recruits / Spawners Current Viability
Steelhead Westside 1,000 456 4 of 6 0.97-1.02 (1980-2005) 1.05 (1979-1998) Low
  Eastside 1,000 1,599 5 of 6 0.98-1.09 (1990-1999) 1.89 (1990-1999) High
Limiting Factors in the Deschutes Subbasin 376, 387, 388

BULL TROUT
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability Freshwater-Instream Dam or Hydropower Facility Management; Forest Management; Urbanization; Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has fragmemted bull trout populations. Passage barriers are present on Link and Spring creeks in the Metolius River watershed.
Instantaneous Mortality Predation by or Competition with Non-Native Species -- Species Management; Fishery Management Species Introduction Juveniles, adults Brook trout are a major threat to bull trout in the Warm Springs River due to competition for limited rearing habitat. Brook and brown trout may be limiting for some bull trout populations in the Metolius River watershed due to their potential for interaction.
Sediment Conditions Increased Sediment Quantity Freshwater-Instream Forest Management; Urbanization Sediment: Bank Destabilization; Impervious Surfaces (Road Density) All Sedimentation from forest practices, catastrophic fire and extensive road system impacts stream substrate quality.
FALL CHINOOK
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Biological Viability Criteria Diversity -- Artificial Propogation Straying Adult spawners Large numbers of out-of-basin stray fall Chinook spawning with indigenous populations pose serious genetic risks.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability; Morphological Changes Estuary Agricultural Practices; Urbanization Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation; Wetland Loss Smolts Historical complex habitats have been modified through channelization, diking, development and other practices.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Morphological Changes Freshwater-Floodplain Agricultural Practices; Forest Management; Urbanization Impervious Surfaces (Road Density); Riparian Degradation Juveniles Floodplains are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Riparian Agricultural Practices Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation Juveniles Riparian corridors are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Instream Agricultural Practices; Forest Management Wood/Structure Removal Juveniles Large wood is generally lacking throughout the subbasin.
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Fishery Management Harvest Adults Fall Chinook are subject to both ocean and freshwater harvest.
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults Juveniles and adults must pass two mainstem dams during migration. The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has extirpated upstream anadromous populations.
Water Quality Temperature; Oxygen -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Water: Temperature and Gas Alteration Juveniles Water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels do not meet state criteria immediately downstream from the Pelton Round Butte complex.
Water Quantity Decreased Water Quantity -- Agricultural Practices Water: Storage or Withdrawal, Channelization, Management Juveniles Seasonal low flows limit adult migration and juvenile rearing.
PACIFIC LAMPREY
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability; Morphological Changes Estuary Agricultural Practices; Urbanization Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation; Wetland Loss Juveniles Historical complex habitats have been modified through channelization, diking, development and other practices.
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults Juveniles and adults must pass two mainstem dams during migration. The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has extirpated upstream anadromous populations.
Water Quality Temperature; Oxygen -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Water: Temperature and Gas Alteration Juveniles Water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels do not meet state criteria immediately downstream from the Pelton Round Butte complex.
Water Quantity Decreased Water Quantity -- Agricultural Practices Water: Storage or Withdrawal, Channelization, Management Juveniles Seasonal low flows limit adult migration and juvenile rearing.
REDBAND TROUT
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability Freshwater-Instream Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has fragmemted redband trout populations.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Riparian Agricultural Practices Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation All Degraded riparian vegetation reduces bank stability in small tributaries of the lower Deschutes River. Riparian corridors are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Water Quality Temperature; Oxygen -- Agriculture Practices; Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Water: Temperature and Gas Alteration; Riparian Degradation All Water temperatures in Buck Hollow, Willow, Bakeoven, Salt, Robin and Lake creeks exceed state water quality criteria for salmonid production. Water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels do not meet state criteria immediately downstream from the Pelton Round Butte complex.
Water Quantity Decreased Water Quantity -- Agricultural Practices Water: Storage or Withdrawal, Channelization, Management Juveniles, adults Trout movement is generally blocked by intermittent flow or subsurface flow. Low winter flows from Wickiup Dam to Bend limit fish productivity because large woody debris and spawning gravel along the stream margin become unavailable. Fish also become stranded in pools and side channels. Summer flow is very low from Bend to Big Falls because of irrigation diversions. Low summer flows also restrict fish populations in tributaries such as Trout Creek. Seasonal low flows limit adult migration and juvenile rearing in Whychus Creek.
SOCKEYE
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults Juveniles and adults must pass two mainstem dams during migration. The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has extirpated upstream anadromous populations.
SPRING CHINOOK
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability; Morphological Changes Estuary Agricultural Practices; Urbanization Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation; Wetland Loss Smolts Historical complex habitats have been modified through channelization, diking, development and other practices.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Morphological Changes Freshwater-Floodplain Agricultural Practices; Forest Management; Urbanization Impervious Surfaces (Road Density); Riparian Degradation Juveniles Floodplains are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Riparian Agricultural Practices Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation Juveniles Riparian corridors are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Instream Agricultural Practices; Forest Management Wood/Structure Removal Juveniles Large wood is generally lacking throughout the subbasin.
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults Juveniles and adults must pass two mainstem dams during migration. The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has extirpated upstream anadromous populations.
Water Quality Temperature; Oxygen -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Water: Temperature and Gas Alteration Juveniles Water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels do not meet state criteria immediately downstream from the Pelton Round Butte complex.
Water Quantity Decreased Water Quantity -- Agricultural Practices Water: Storage or Withdrawal, Channelization, Management Juveniles Seasonal low flows limit adult migration and juvenile rearing.
SUMMER STEELHEAD
Key Limiting Factor Impairment Habitat Affected Threat Type Threat Name Life Stage(s) Description
Biological Viability Criteria Diversity -- Artificial Propogation Straying Adult spawners Large numbers of out-of-basin stray Summer Steelhead spawning with indigenous populations pose serious genetic risks.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Access and Availability; Morphological Changes Estuary Agricultural Practices; Urbanization Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation; Wetland Loss Smolts Historical complex habitats have been modified through channelization, diking, development and other practices.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Morphological Changes Freshwater-Floodplain Agricultural Practices; Forest Management; Urbanization Impervious Surfaces (Road Density); Riparian Degradation Juveniles Floodplains are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Riparian Agricultural Practices Diking; Filling; Riparian Degradation Juveniles Riparian corridors are generally degraded throughout the subbasin.
Habitat Quantity and Quality Small-Scale Structural Complexity; Morphological Changes Freshwater-Instream Agricultural Practices; Forest Management Wood/Structure Removal Juveniles Large wood is generally lacking throughout the subbasin.
Instantaneous Mortality Anthropogenic Mortality -- Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Migration Impediments Juveniles, adults Juveniles and adults must pass two mainstem dams during migration. The lack of fish passage at the Pelton Round Butte complex has extirpated upstream anadromous populations.
Water Quality Temperature; Oxygen -- Agriculture Practices; Dam or Hydropower Facility Management Water: Temperature and Gas Alteration; Riparian Degradation Eggs, juveniles High summer water temperatures in tributaries utilized by summer steelhead result from low flow and grazing pressure. Water temperatures in Buck Hollow, Willow, Bakeoven, Salt, Robin and Lake creeks exceed state water quality criteria for salmonid production. Water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels do not meet state criteria immediately downstream from the Pelton Round Butte complex.
Water Quantity Decreased Water Quantity -- Agricultural Practices Water: Storage or Withdrawal, Channelization, Management Eggs, juveniles Low summer flows restrict fish populations in tributaries such as Trout Creek. Seasonal low flows limit adult migration and juvenile rearing.