On August 23, 2021, the Council asked the ISRP to review a revised proposal from the Shoshone Bannock Tribes (SBT), regarding Project #1992-010-00, Fort Hall Habitat Restoration.The project proponents revised their original proposal to address the ISRP’s “Response Requested” recommendation from the ISRP’s Preliminary Report (ISRP 2020-4, pages 237-243; April 2, 2020) for the Resident Fish and Sturgeon Project Review 2019/2020. The project proposal has three primary goals: 1) maintain and restore ecological health and resilience in coupled river-floodplain and stream-riparian ecosystems of the Fort Hall Reservation; 2) achieve a naturally sustainable population of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout (YCT) and maintain a fishery for Tribal members; and 3) foster place-based education for Tribal members and promote traditional ecological knowledge and culture.
The ISRP recommends the revised proposal “Meets Scientific Review Criteria – Conditional" and finds it to be a significant improvement from the original proposal. Clearly, the proponents put a lot of extra work in re-writing the proposal, and they have made a convincing statement that their project is important and generally well planned. However, a few issues remain, and the proponents should update their revised proposal to address Conditions concerning the need for quantitative, time-bound (SMART) objectives; a strategy to address expanded activities; a timeline for major activities; and details on fish and habitat sampling methods.