Bibliography Background About KRIS

Kootenai River Flow

Streamflow data for the Kootenai River and tributaries comes from U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Water Survey of Canada (WSC).  The USGS and WSC publish daily average discharge, monthly average discharge, and annual peak discharge records from streamflow gages throughout the United States and Canada.  Gage records are reported by water year.  A water year begins on October 1 of the prior calendar year and extends to September 30 of the following year.  For example, the 1998 water year started on October 1, 1997 and extended to September 30, 1998.

Kootenai River Climate Data

Climate data for the Kootenai River Watershed includes monthly average air temperature, monthly average snowfall, and monthly average and annual precipitation quantities and extremes. Climate data are from the National Climatic Data Center and are compiled and maintained by the Western Regional Climate Center.

Map Information in KRIS Kootenai

There are a wealth of electronic map data available for parts of the Kootenai River basin. Electronic mapping information in the pilot KRIS Kootenai Map project are from the Kootenai River Network, Kootenai National Forest and the Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Management Project. Map data can now be viewed within KRIS due to programming advances that have integrated a KRIS-Map Viewer. The map themes that can be reviewed are from the pilot KRIS Kootenai Map project, which contains a larger array of spatial data in ArcView, including the detailed information about origin of the data and its intended use (metadata). KRIS Map Arc View projects often use the Spatial Analyst, but are also viewable without that extension with the grid data converted to an image.

Water Quality Monitoring by Free Run Aquatic Research

Raw water temperature data and Kootenai River secchi disc readings were provided by Gretchen Kruse of Free Run Aquatic Research for the pilot KRIS Kootenai project. Water temperature data were from the mainstem Kootenai at Bonners Ferry (1991-1997), Ambush Rock and Myrtle Creek (1999) and for Trout Creek in 1999. The latter data were collected as part of a cooperative study with the Kootenai Tribe and Kruse (2002). Data were collected using Onset StowAway® continuous water temperature monitors. Prior to placement in the stream, each temperature monitor was calibrated to ensure proper response to temperature. Given the type of water temperature monitors used, it is expected that the error would not exceed 0.5ºC. Monitoring occurred during the summer months when the water temperatures are highest. Secchi disc readings were taken in 1999.  

Fisheries Data from Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

A wealth of fisheries data in the pilot KRIS Kootenai project comes from Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks (MFWP) (Hoffman et al., 2002). 

Fish Trapping: In the years 1970-2001, MFWP used a fish trap to monitor juvenile and adult westslope cutthroat trout movement between Young Creek and Libby Reservoir. Fpr details see Hoffman et al. (2000).

Electrofishing: MFWP has used boat and backpack electrofishing to monitor fish populations in tributaries including Grave Creek (2000) and Sinclair Creek (1985, 1997-2000). Electrofishing stuns fish but usually does not cause mortality. 

Gillnet Fishing: Gillnets have been used by MFWP since 1975 to assess annual trends in fish populations and species composition in Libby Reservoir. 

Bull Trout Spawner and Redd Counts: From 1983 to 2000, MFWP conducted spawner surveys in which they counted the number of bull trout redds in all Kootenai tributaries that were known to contain suitable bull trout spawning habitat.  The tributaries are: Grave Creek, Wigwam River, Quartz Creek O’Brien Creek, Pipe Creek, Bear Creek, and Keeler Creek.

Fisheries Monitoring by Free Run Aquatic Research

Gretchen Kruse of Free Run Aquatic Resources provided fisheries data from Trout Creek collected using electrofishing. The following is from the Trout Creek Biological Assessment (Kootenai Tribe and Kruse, 2002) and describes methods as follows: "The upper and lower ends of each sample site were blocked with a small (3/16 inch) mesh net to enclose the area. Fish were collected with standard 3-pass depletion backpack electroshocking methods (Murphy and Willis 1996; Appendix 2). The backpack shocker was set at H3 and 600 V. Number and species collected were recorded following each pass. Length and weight of each fish was recorded. Scales were collected for age analysis. MICROFISH 3.0 software was used to obtain population estimates (#fish/m) for individual fish species captured in each section (upper forested area, transition zone, flood plain zone). The project was carried out for the Kootenai Tribe, which has a long term interest in restoring the fisheries productivity of Trout Creek.

Sediment Discharge and Road Decommissioning Data 

The US Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Northern Region includes the Idaho Panhandle National Forest (IPNF), which fall partially within the Kootenai River basin.  The IPNF Forest Plan was accepted in September of 1987 and contains protocol for monitoring and evaluation of that plan for adaptive management.  The USDA Forest Service annually publishes a monitoring report (USFS, 2000).

Water quality monitoring is part of the Forest Plan Monitoring and Evaluation Report and includes sediment transport as a parameter to evaluate the impacts of forest management. Suspended sediment loads, bedload, and stream discharge have been monitored in many small disturbed and undisturbed watersheds within IPNF.  Monitoring data extends back to 1974 and is used to calibrate and verify watershed response models.  The watershed response models are used to estimate annual suspended sediment load and bedload based on daily average discharge. Roads have been recognized as a major source of sediment on the Forest and data are included in the pilot KRIS Kootenai project on road decommissioning from the annual report (USFS, 2000).

USFWS Partners in Wildlife Restoration Photos

Rox Rogers of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northwest Montana Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program provided pictures of restoration projects of Therrault Creek and Grave Creek restoration projects. Sharon Hooley of USFWS provided spatial data indicating locations of projects.

Photos of the Kootenai and Yaak Rivers from Big Sky Fishing.Com

The pilot KRIS Kootenai project did not have a budget for field reconnaissance to have representative photos of the Kootenai River watershed or its tributaries. A search of the web, however, showed that Big Sky website ( had an excellent set of photos that captured the beauty and power of the Kootenai and Yaak rivers as well as the grandeur of their watersheds. They graciously allowed use of a selection of pictures as long as KRIS links folks to their site.

Photos of the Kootenay Lake and Gerrard Strain Rainbow Trout from East Shore Guides

The pilot KRIS Kootenai project captured photos of fish and fishing in Kootenay Lake from the East Shore Guides website. The Gerrard strain rainbow trout in Kootenay Lake get huge by eating kookanie salmon that live in the lake.





Note about documents in KRIS