Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management Utah Fisheries and Aquatic Resource Management
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages the Nation¿s most ecologically diverse range of aquatic habitat for fish, wildlife, and invertebrates, totaling more than 150,000 miles of streams and rivers, over 3 million acres of lake and reservoir habitat, and nearly 13 million acres of wetlands. Properly functioning instream, riparian and wetland areas are critical to sustaining ecosystem functions and services, providing local communities with clean water, habitat for aquatic and terrestrial wildlife, reducing sedimentation, soil erosion, improving water quality, and providing recreational opportunities. The BLM Aquatic Habitat Management mission area works cooperatively with a wide range of constituents to manage for the biological, chemical, and physical integrity and function and natural diversity of aquatic ecosystems. The BLM develops strategies that provide protection for instream, riparian and wetland areas as well as maintain or restore stream function and stream access to floodplains while supporting multiple uses on public lands. The program manages and guides fish and aquatic habitat conservation, riparian and wetland conservation, control of aquatic invasive species, aquatic organism passage, and monitoring riparian and instream habitat conditions and water quantity and quality conditions and trends. The BLM inventories and monitors water resource conditions and trends to support multiple uses of public lands, including providing habitat for fish and other aquatic organisms. Monitoring surface and groundwater quality, as well as identifying, promoting, and implementing best-management practices, helps to maintain and improve water quality and function of aquatic ecosystems. Managing riparian, wetland and instream habitat provides appropriate conditions for fish, invertebrates and amphibians, including special status, anadromous, and subsistence species, and other native and game aquatic species. Supporting the preparation and processing of water rights filings assures adequate water is available for multiple use public lands management. The program¿s participation in the Colorado River Salinity Control Forum collaboratively addresses sediment and salt discharge into its waters, and helps ensure usable water supplies for millions of downstream users of the Colorado River Basin. The BLM works to prevent the introduction, spread, and impacts that result from aquatic and riparian invasive species with local, State, and non-governmental partners. A myriad of invasive species pose threats to water delivery and aquatic habitat health, including invasive plants, mammals, fish and invertebrates, including zebra and quagga mussels. The Secretary of the Interior made a commitment to the Western Governors Association in June 2017, ¿Safeguarding the West from Invasive Species: Actions to Strengthen Federal, State, and Tribal Coordination to Address Invasive Mussels. The BLMs role is prevention through collaborative partnerships to limit the transportation of invasive mussels by inspecting and decontaminate watercraft in concert with State management agencies throughout the West. The BLM continues to work with partners to fund and implement actions identified in invasive species management plans and State and Federal agency habitat management plans. The BLM designs and implements lake, wetland, river, stream, and riparian treatments to restore and reconnect native and game aquatic species habitat on public lands. The BLM also works to enhance the quality and quantity of angling opportunities on BLM managed lands by conserving and restoring habitat and improving fish productivity. These activities include analyzing habitat and water resource data needed to maintain, protect, and restore aquatic habitat resources effectively, as well as applying expertise to assess and improve the public experience, productivity and resiliency of these resources on public lands. The Aquatic Habitat Management mission area enables the BLM to develop and implement program policy, carry out projects, assure adequate water is available, and maintain vital partnerships at all levels within the Bureau to support multiple use and sustained yield on public lands. Management actions emphasize on-the-ground and in-the-water actions that increase the health of fish and wildlife populations to sustain recreational and subsistence uses that enhance or maintain many local economies in the West. In addition, these actions reduce the need to federally list species and work to protect and recover listed species and the ecosystems upon which they depend, as per the Endangered Species Act of 1973. The Clean Water Act guides the BLMs uses of water resources, including water quality and quantity. The BLM will continue to work with cooperators, conservation organizations, fishing partners, and other stakeholders to focus on the highest value habitat restoration and conservation projects. The BLM will also continue to conduct baseline inventories and assessments critical to many public land uses and ongoing monitoring programs, including emphasizing native, special status, sport, and subsistence species to enhance opportunities for fishing on America's public lands, in support of Secretarial Orders (SO) 3347, Conservation Stewardship and Outdoor Recreation, 3356, Hunting, Fishing, Recreational Shooting, and Wildlife Conservation Opportunities and Cooperation with States, Tribes, and Territories, and 3366, Increasing Recreational Opportunities on Lands and Waters Managed by the U.S. Department of the Interior..