Anadromous Fish Restoration Program

Our Goal is to make all reasonable efforts to at least double natural production of anadromous fish in California's Central Valley streams on a long-term, sustainable basis.

The AFRP works to achieve the doubling goal through a variety of projects throughout the central valley. We work cooperatively with other federal, state and local agencies, non-profits and private landowners on projects that increase available juvenile and adult salmon habitat.

white sturgeon crew, Steve Martarano usfws

White Sturgeon crew: Graham Mytton, Laura
Heironimus and Zachary Jessee
Photo: Steve Martarano/USFWS

February 23, 2018
Stanislaus River Sturgeon

Feature Story
By Steve Martarano
Bay-Delta Fish & Wildlife Office
Confirmed in Stanislaus River for the first time, a green sturgeon highlights benefits of longtime research and restoration efforts.

Hamm<on Bar Riparian Enhancement Project. Steve Martarano, USFWS

Hammon Bar Riparian Enhancement Project
Photo: Steve Martarano/USFWS

July 5, 2017
Work on Yuba River's Hammon Bar earns high honors

Featured Story
By Steve Martarano
Bay-Delta Fish & Wildlife Office

The Hammon Bar Riparian Enhancement Project, completed last fall, was designed to evaluate and demonstrate the benefits of planting large cuttings of cottonwood and willow trees in the floodplain of the lower Yuba River. The main goal was to create new biologically diverse riparian vegetation to enhance fish habitat through additional shading, cover, and food supply.

November 18, 2016
A Sacramento Biologist's Love of the Delta Became Her Life's Calling

Heather Swinney, Photo: Steve Martarano, USFWS

Heather Swinney & Abigail Warwas
Steve Martarano, USFWS

Heather Swinney still remembers when it clicked that the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta she had enjoyed her entire life might become a career. It was during high school, and she was out on one of her adventures on the estuary she loved when it resonated to her that combining passion for science and water could be her life's calling. Heather has been the go-to Delta expert for the San Francisco Bay Delta Fish and Wildlife Office, located in downtown Sacramento, since 2009 when it first opened. With over a decade of experience along with an outgoing personality, she quickly became a senior biologist and key resource to her colleagues on the issues and geography of what has always been her backyard. Story

July 28, 2016
Featured Story
Learning How to Manage White Sturgeon in California's San Joaquin River

"A Needle in a Thousand Haystacks"
By Laura Heironimus
Lodi Fish & Wildlife Office

White Sturgeon, Laura Heironimus, USFWS

Garrett Giannetta and Bill Powell
Anadromous Fish Restoration Program
with White Sturgeon
Photo: Laura Heironimus/USFWS

In the past, little was known about how and when white sturgeon used the San Joaquin River in California. Most San Joaquin River basin fish sampling efforts focus on salmon and those efforts have never captured a sturgeon, thus contributing to the belief that sturgeon rarely, if ever, visit there. Additionally, before 2007, anglers didn't have an easy way to report sturgeon catches. Since 2011, several steps have been taken that has helped the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Anadromous Fish Restoration Program (AFRP) better understand the population.

Field Notes
Re-establishing the Merced River's Henderson Park for a New Generation

by Laura Heironimus and Zac Jackson
Lodi Fish & Wildlife Office

Henderson Park, Steve Martarano USFWS

Restored Henderson Park
Photo: Steve Martarano/USFWS

Henderson Park, a restored area situated along the north bank of the Merced River in eastern Merced County, offers opportunities for picnicking, fishing, and other river recreation. In the early 2000's, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service teamed with Merced County, Cramer Fish Sciences, and the local community of Snelling to restore channel form and function on the Merced River at Henderson Park.

Field Notes
"Shocking" Discovery on the San Joaquin River

Electrofishing Lodi FWS photo

Using electrofishing gear to sample
disconnected pool adjacent to the
Chowchilla bifurcation structure
on the San Joaquin River. USFWS Photo

During fish monitoring surveys on the San Joaquin River in Madera County, fisheries biologists from the Lodi Fish and Wildlife Office found a previously undocumented invasive fish species - the weather loach  (Misgurnus anquillicaudatus). "It is uncertain how this species may impact native species throughout the San Joaquin River basin, but egg predation, competition for resources, and pathogen transfer are all possible negative effects," said fishery biologist Zac Jackson.