Comments Accepted through Jan. 25
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the release of the Draft Upper Cattaraugus Creek Fisheries Management Plan for public comment. The draft plan provides a roadmap for fisheries management practices following the planned fish passage project at the Springville Dam. DEC is accepting public comments on the draft plan until Jan. 25, 2019.
"Cattaraugus Creek provides some of the most diverse trout fishing experiences in New York State," Commissioner Seggos said. "Lower Cattaraugus Creek is regarded as one of the premier destinations in North America for steelhead anglers, and upper Cattaraugus Creek provides excellent angling opportunities for resident rainbow and brown trout. This plan seeks to enhance Cattaraugus Creek as a premier destination in Western New York for a year-round, high-quality sport fishery."
Construction of a selective fish passage system at Springville Dam will allow steelhead access to additional miles of high-quality habitat and create new fishing opportunities in upper Cattaraugus Creek. The draft plan focuses on the addition of lake-run steelhead in the 34 miles of the main stem of Cattaraugus Creek and its numerous tributaries above Springville Dam and covers the period 2019-2030.
DEC's goal is to manage the upper Cattaraugus Creek and its tributaries as a high-quality, year-round sport fishery with opportunities to catch a lake-run steelhead, as well as resident brown and rainbow trout. The draft plan proposes a variety of strategies to achieve this goal, including improved and increased angler access, maintaining responsible stewardship of fisheries resources, protection and enhancement of critical fish habitats, and utilizing science and adaptive management to measure and achieve success.
The full draft Upper Cattaraugus Creek Fisheries Management Plan is available on DEC's website.
To comment on the plan, the public can email with the subject line "Upper Cattaraugus Creek Plan" to fwfishle or send written comments via U.S. Mail to: Jason Robinson, Unit Leader, Lake Erie Fisheries Research Unit, 178 Point Drive North, Dunkirk, New York 14048-1031.