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Rick Dinicola,
Associate Director, WA Water Science Center,
934 Broadway,
Suite 300
Tacoma, WA 98402

(253) 552-1603
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Makah Reservation Water Resources

Project Summaries

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WA191 - Water Resources of the Makah Indian Reservation - Completed FY1980

Problem - The Neah Bay town water supply, obtained from the Waatch River, is inadequate during the summer months when the demand is greatest. Increased logging in the drainages of all major streams may increase the sediment yields and affect both water supplies and fisheries resources. A new fish hatchery on the Sooes River may have the dual problem of inadequate water supply (SW) and poor water quality due to lumber mills and bark disposal piles upstream. Seepage from the town's sewer lagoon may also affect the quality of nearby streams.

Objectives -

  1. Determine flow characteristics of the principal streams so water supply alternatives for the town and the hatchery can be evaluated;
  2. determine the water quality, especially sediment yield, of the major streams;
  3. evaluate the potential for contamination from sewer lagoon seepage, and
  4. evaluate the ground-water potential of developed parts of the Reservation.

Approach -

  1. Establish 4 continuous and 2 partial record stream-gaging stations;
  2. drill a 200-ft deep test well near the hatchery;
  3. collect periodic chemical quality samples at 8 sites on the major streams;
  4. collect sediment samples at 3 of the gaging stations and 3 other sites, and
  5. install piezometer wells near the sewer lagoon to determine ground-water gradient and obtain water samples for QW analyses.

WA193 - Salmon propagation in Ozette Lake - Completed FY1978

Problem - The Makah Tribe is dependent in large part on its fisheries resource for income. The Sockeye salmon catch from the Ozette River has declined drastically from an annual average of 12,800 salmon in the period 1948-51 to an annual average of 360 during the period 1964-73.

Objectives - The objectives of this study area are to (1) determine the hydrological, physical, chemical, and biological factors relating to sockeye salmon production in Ozette Lake; (2) study the character of potential spawning grounds in the lake and its tributaries; (3) evaluate the potential production of sockeye salmon on the basis of the above factors.

Approach - Collect and analyze data on water temperature, D.O., lake transparency, zooplankton, phytoplankton, and chemical quality--especially nitrogen, phosphorus, and silica in Ozette Lake. Collect and analyze data on the water temperature, discharge, and substrate composition of tributaries to Ozette Lake utilized for spawning by sockeye salmon.

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