2017 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 $23.4 million public and private matching dollars for 139 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 87 barriers to fish passage, reconnected or improved 1,130 miles of native trout habitat, and placed 30 protective fish barriers to conserve important native trout conservation populations.
In 2017, WNTI and its partners funded eight habitat restoration projects benefiting our priority species with a total of $272,415 National Fish Habitat Partnership (NFHP) funds leveraged to partner matches of $4,400,000 for a total project’s value of $4,672,415. WNTI additionally funded eight small projects through our Small Grants Program, awarding $18,800 in funding that was matched by $98,014 in other public and private funding, for a total small grants projects value of $116,814. WNTI’s Small Grants program is funded through non-federal funds contributed by partners and donors. We would especially like to thank Running River’s Rocky Mountain Flyathlon for their partnership and support of our small grants projects in Colorado. Collectively, projects funded in 2017 will remove or bypass 12 barriers to restore access to 53 miles of stream for fish passage, restore 27 miles of riparian habitat, complete 26 habitat assessments, and assess 60 stream miles.
We had significant new outreach programming implemented in 2017, with the addition of eight additional sub species “courses” to our Chasing Native Trout Campaign and a collaboration with RepYourWater to create a line of 21 western native trout hats with a percentage of hat sales proceeds coming back to us to support on-the-ground habitat projects in all 12 states where WNTI works.