EDITOR: Mark West Creek has been designated as a spawning stream for steelhead for 30 years. About 15 years ago, I asked state Fish and Wildlife why the fish population was dwindling. Each person referred me to another person. Four people later, I ended up with someone who said they would get back to me. So far they haven't.
Recently I stacked some stones across the creek and put a piece of plastic over them, raising the surface water level behind my seasonal dam from six inches to about 18 inches. It's nice for me to cool off on a warm day and also a better habitat for the few fish that dwell there. The deeper the water the cooler the water at the deeper part of the pool would be, and steelhead prefer cool water.
Then, for the first time in 30 years, a Fish and Wildlife representative showed up. He told me the dam was detrimental to the young fish and that I had to lower the water level gradually over the next few weeks or I would be fined $250. So I did. Now you know the Fish and Wildlife Department is doing something, but I don't think the fish appreciate it.
EDITOR: I enjoy The Press Democrat each day, and I have noticed how often the word "inappropriate" is now used to describe scandalous and even criminal behavior. A recent article in the National Review discussed this in detail and concluded that "inappropriate" is wearing a necktie to a barbecue. How appropriate.