Goose Lake Redband Trout

(Update) February 2017

Goose Lake Redband Trout Rescues

Year Rescued Fish
2014 223
2015 20
2016 no rescues necessary
Table 1: Goose Lake Redband Trout Rescues

Severe drought conditions and loss of habitat led to Goose Lake Redband Trout rescues in 2014 and 2015 (see original report below). The rescues were confined to Cold Creek, Modoc County (a tributary to Lassen Creek) and fish were relocated to Lassen Creek (2014) and upper Cold Creek (2015). No rescues were necessary in 2016 (Table 1).

CDFW plans to continue monitoring Goose Lake Redband streams to document post-drought changes in habitat conditions and fish response.


Genetically Unique Species

Goose Lake (Modoc County) is a large, shallow, alkaline lake on the California-Oregon border (map). Historically, the lake had been observed flooding into the Pit River during high water years and drying out completely during drought years. Goose Lake redband trout, Oncorhynchous mykiss spp., represent a genetically unique species of rainbow trout and are listed as a California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Species of Special Concern.

Necessity of Rescue

During the summer of 2014, stream conditions and loss of fish holding habitat in Cold Creek, tributary to Lassen Creek which drains into Goose Lake prompted an emergency fish rescue to protect and conserve the Goose Lake Redband Trout (Figure 1). On July 24th, 30th and 31st 2014, a total of 223 Goose Lake Redband Trout were rescued from Cold Creek and successfully relocated to suitable habitat upstream in Lassen Creek (Figure 2).

two men working in rocky streambed
Figure 1: CDFW biologist remove trout from Cold Creek

freeflowing stream with grassy banks
Figure 2: Trout were relocated to Lassen Creek


Project Permitting

Interagency Fish Rescue Policy (CDFW/NMFS/USFWS). Fish rescue by CDFW is exempt under CEQA.