California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Program Overview

Skinner Facility Operations
Fish Facilities Unit
Monitoring and Operations Projects

The State Water Project (SWP), operated by the California Department of Water Resources (DWR), and the Central Valley Project (CVP), operated by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, export water out of the San Francisco Bay Delta for urban and agricultural use in California. When water is exported, fish become entrained into the diversion. Since 1957, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) has salvaged fish at the Tracy Fish Collection Facility (TFCF). The Department of Fish and Game's Fish Facilities Unit, in cooperation with DWR, began salvaging fish at the Skinner Delta Fish Protective Facility (SDFPF) in 1968. The salvaged fish are trucked daily and released at several sites in the western Delta. The schedule of fish hauling is dependent on salvage rates, debris loading, and special-status-species procedures. Salvage of fish at both facilities is conducted 24 hours a day, seven days a week at regular intervals. Sampling of entrained fish at the SDFPF and TFCF is the source for DFG's daily salvage and loss estimates for the monitoring of incidental take of listed fish species.

Fish salvage and loss information at the SDFPF and TFCF is used extensively in water project monitoring and planning. The Fish Facilities Monitoring Project manages the data collected on fish entrained and salvaged at the SDFPF and TFCF. Directed by cooperative agreements and funded by USBR and DWR, project staff are responsible for key entry, quality assurance, data processing, data reporting, and other database management activities for these facilities. This project maintains one of the largest historical databases on Delta species available and has been used in assessing the effects of new facilities and programs, water project operations proposals, and evaluation of proposed CALFED alternatives. Data can be obtained via FTP from the Bay-Delta server. Data files on the server have been compressed in zip format.