2016 Annual Report Executive Summary
Since its inception in 2006, the Western Native Trout Initiative (WNTI) has directed almost $5 million in federal fish habitat funds leveraged to $19 million public and private matching dollars for 123 priority native trout conservation projects. By leveraging funding provided to WNTI by the National Fish Habitat Partnership, WNTI and its many partners have successfully improved the status of western native trout populations in 12 western states including Alaska. With the collaboration and coordination of WNTI Partners, together we have removed 75 barriers to fish passage, reconnected or improved 1,033 miles of native trout habitat, and placed 29 protective fish barriers to conserve important native trout conservation populations.
In 2016, WNTI its partners funded seven habitat restoration projects benefiting our priority species with a total of $234,120 National Fish Habitat Partnership (NFHP) funds leveraged to partner matches of $2,368,088 for a total project’s value of $2,602,208. WNTI additionally funded 12 small projects through our Small Grants Program, awarding $33,465 in funding that was matched by $468,575 in other public and private funding, for a total small grants projects value of $502,040. WNTI’s Small Grants program is funded through non-federal funds contributed by partners and donors. Collectively, projects funded in 2016 will remove or bypass 14 barriers to restore access to 32 miles of stream for fish passage, restore 25 miles of riparian habitat, complete 18 habitat assessments, and assess 445 stream miles.
In late 2016, the WNTI Steering Committee approved an updated strategic plan and set strategic priorities for the next seven years. Updated species status reports were also completed for Apache Trout, Gila Trout, Greenback Cutthroat Trout, and Rio Grande Cutthroat Trout. We had significant new outreach programming implemented in 2016, with the launch of our new StoryMap, and production of our Blueheads and Bonnevilles film highlighting our partnerships on the Weber River, Utah.