Saturday, 04 February 2023

Volunteers honored at Watershed Year in Review

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Kim Clymire (left) receives the Partner of the Year Award from Chuck Morse, president of the West Lake RCD Board of Directors. Photo by Terre Logsdon.



KELSEYVILLE – It was a night to celebrate accomplishments and a night to honor the dedicated volunteers who help make our watersheds – and all of Lake County – a healthier place for all to live


The sixth annual Watershed Year in Review was sponsored by the East Lake and West Lake Resource Conservation Districts (RCDs), the Upper Cache Creek Watershed Alliance and hosted by the Chi Council for the Clear Lake Hitch.


Kim Clymire, director of Lake County Public Services – believing he was attending a Kelseyville Business Association meeting to make a presentation on Skate Parks – was surprised to learn that was being honored with the Partner of the Year Award.


“Kim has expressed a philosophy and belief of support for this volunteer effort and has been a major supporter of what we do,” said Chuck Morse, president of the West Lake RCD Board of Directors, who presented the award to Clymire.


“I feel blessed and lucky to be part of the team,” Clymire said.


Both Peter Windrem, chair of the Chi Council, and Ronda Mottlow, water resource manager for Robinson Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians, gave separate presentations on the state of the Clear Lake Hitch – a species of fish unique to Clear Lake whose numbers have plummeted in the past 50 years.


The exact reasons for their decline is unknown, but both Robinson Rancheria and the Chi Council are monitoring their habitat, which includes the tributaries to Clear Lake as well as the lake itself.


Not only are the hitch important to Pomo culture – the fish has been a staple part of the Pomo diet for thousands of years – but “hitch are important to the economy [in Lake County],” said Mottlow. That's because the largemouth bass, which are abundant in Clear Lake and bring fisherman and tournaments from around the world to our county, feed on the hitch.


The Upper Cache Creek Watershed Alliance honored six outstanding and dedicated volunteers with awards that were designed by Carle High School students.


Linda Juntunen, Project Coordinator for the East and West Lake RCDs, presented awards to Kevin Ingram, Big Valley Watershed Council; Robert Geary, Chi Council for the Clear Lake Hitch; Fran Ransley, Lower Lake Watershed Council; Joe Dias, Middle Creek Coordinated Resource Management and Planning; Jim Bridges, Nice Watershed Group; and Patty Patten, Scotts Creek Watershed Council.

Greg Dills, watershed coordinator for the East and West Lake RCDs, gave an overview of the year’s activities and Korinn Smith, district conservationist for Natural Resources Conservation Service, gave a presentation on how they've assisted landowners during the previous year.

If you would like to participate in counting hitch during their annual migrations upstream to spawn, the Chi Council for the Clear Lake Hitch is always looking for more volunteers.


Visit www.lakelive.org/chicouncil for more information.


E-mail Terre Logsdon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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