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The Failure of Existing Plans to Protect Salmon Habitat in the Clearwater National Forest in Idaho

Oct 9, 2019


The examination of the development histories of four typical salmon watersheds in the Snake River Sub-basin of Idaho reveals a consistent failure to adequately protect salmon habitat. Available data and analyses show that the vast majority of watersheds managed for “multiple uses” have been severely degraded in their watershed and fish habitat conditions. Four tributary watersheds in the Clearwater National Forest are examined in detail with respect to their histories of timber development impacts and subsequent sediment degradation of salmon habitat. In this paper, the reasons why past and existing management plans have not protected salmon habitat are investigated. Management strategies and actions necessary to protect salmon habitat are articulated.


Al Espinosa Jr., Jon Rhodes, and Dale McCullough


Espinosa, F.A.Jr., J.J. Rhodes, and D. McCullough. 1997. The failure of existing plans to protect salmon habitat in the Clearwater National Forest in Idaho. Journal of Environmental Management 49(2):205-230. Online at



Report No.


Media Type

Journal Article