Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group is a nonprofit organization that works in King and eastern Kitsap counties to maximize self-sustaining salmon populations through community engagement. We work cooperatively with landowners, governments, businesses, Tribes and other nonprofits to identify, design and implement projects that improve salmon habitat in the rivers and streams that sustain us all. As a nonprofit, Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group receives support from the state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the generosity of private businesses, organizations and citizens like you.
Salmon Need Our Help
For eons, the salmon that returned to their natal Northwest rivers and streams to spawn were bountiful. Today, however, these rivers and streams are in peril, and so too are these fish and the web of wildlife they support.
One example: Only 22 of at least 37 historic Chinook salmon populations now remain, enduring at only 10% of their historic numbers (Source: Puget Sound Partnership). The reasons, of course, are intricate and many.
Over the years, our rivers and streams have been altered to support development. Old growth forests, which flanked and filtered our waterways, have been cut. Roads have been built, streams and creeks forced to flow underneath, through pipes prone to blockage. Dikes, too, have been erected, walling off natural flood plains. As a result of this degradation, the fish that once teemed in our rivers and streams no longer do.
Fortunately, the impact of some of these past actions can be reversed.
By working together to restore the habitat in and around the rivers and streams that run through our backyards, our neighborhoods and our communities, little by little we can make—and are making—a big difference. By working together we can—and are—improving the success of spawning salmon as well as the survival of their progeny as they journey to the ocean.
How We Help
For more than 25 years, Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group has worked with communities in central Puget Sound to restore local stream and near-shore habitat, so salmon can thrive. Through restoration, education and monitoring, we’ve been making real progress, thanks to all those who support us.
Habitat Restoration: Working in partnership with private landowners and public landowners—such as local parks departments—we help improve the health of local streams through projects that improve stream habitat.
For example, we:
- Remove barriers to spawning fish, such as undersized culverts, which block fish passage, and replace them with amply sized culverts, so fish can freely travel to and from the ocean.
- Restore streamside vegetation to provide natural shade to cool the water and ensure that rainwater is naturally slowed and filtered before entering the stream.
- Put felled logs in streams, strategically, to provide places for juvenile fish to rest and hide from predators.
Education: People care about their local streams. And they care about the fish and the wildlife that depend on them. Understandably, people don’t always know that the fish are declining, or why, or what they can do to help.
That’s why we work to connect people of all ages with restoration. When people understand why our streams are suffering, and realize that they can do something about it, they act. We engage local community groups, schools, businesses and volunteers in restoration, such as streamside planting projects. And we utilize the Citizen Action Training School, too, a program that trains local residents on the science and policies that impact the health of Puget Sound.
Where We Help
Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group works in three watersheds in the central Puget Sound (Region 4). In Kitsap County, our service area includes all individual streams flowing into the western side of Puget Sound. This area is known as West Sound Watersheds (eastern Watershed Resource Inventory Area 15). In King County, our region includes the Cedar River/Lake Washington/Lake Sammamish watershed (WRIA 8), the Green/Duwamish River watershed (WRIA 9) and individual streams flowing into the middle Puget Sound.
In each of the watersheds we work, we strive to support efforts to restore endangered salmon stocks, and the habitats that sustain them. We do so by working with landowners, local governments, businesses, Tribes and other nonprofits.
Who Helps Us
Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group is part of a larger, coordinated effort to restore fish habitat throughout the state of Washington.
We are one of 14 regional organizations within the Regional Fisheries Enhancement Group Program. Created in 1990 by the Washington State Legislature, the program aims to involve local communities, citizen volunteers and landowners in the state’s salmon recovery efforts. We also participate in the Regional Fisheries Coalition.
The generosity of private businesses, organizations and neighbors helps make these projects a reality. Base funding for the RFEG program comes from a grant from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program, a portion of state commercial and recreational fishing license fees, and excess egg and carcass sales administered by the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife.
How You Can Help
Learn: Explore our website, or visit us on Facebook to learn more about what we do, and how you can help us do what we do—save salmon!
Donate: Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group is a nonprofit. Donations of any amount are not only appreciated (and tax deductible); they are crucial to our survival and to the survival of salmon.
Volunteer: Donating your time is perhaps the most important donation of all. Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group has a number of volunteer opportunities for individuals, organizations, businesses and students alike.