Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Calaveras Critters: California Tiger Salamanders on the Move

Prior to and during construction, the Calaveras Dam Replacement Project implements measures to avoid and minimize impacts to wildlife located in the Alameda Creek Watershed. The California tiger salamander (Ambystoma californiense) is an amphibian native to Northern California growing up to 8 inches long. California tiger salamanders migrate at night from upland habitats to aquatic breeding sites during the first major rainfall events of fall and early winter.

Our Environmental team has taken proactive steps to protect and relocate the California tiger salamander species. Wildlife exclusion fencing is strategically located along the boundaries of the construction work limits to deter wildlife from entering. Also, water moistened buckets are placed in trenches between silt fences to catch the critters, which are later moved. As of today, 72 California tiger salamanders have been trapped and relocated to safer habitats away from project construction. During construction biological monitors are present during initial vegetation clearing and grading to relocate any wildlife.

For more project info, contact us at our 24 hour answer line at (866) 973-1476 or email mle@sfwater.org

Photos courtesy of Bill Stagnaro, Environmental Inspector & Biologist

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Calaveras Dam Rebuilds Intake Shaft

About four months after construction began, we have witnessed a transformation of the original intake shaft and platform. In September 2011, this area served as the reception area for the official Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Calaveras Dam Replacement Project.

The new intake shaft will be built adjacent to the existing intake shaft with a depth of 150 feet. The soil nail wall is currently being constructed to support the soil surrounding the future intake shaft. The architectural design of the new intake tower will replicate the design of the original tower built in 1925. Tunnels will be constructed to connect the existing water lines to the new intake shaft. The gravity fed system will send water from the Calaveras reservoir to the Sunol Valley Treatment Plant, eventually becoming our drinking water.

For more project info, contact us at our 24 hour answer line at (866) 973-1476 or email mle@sfwater.org