Family Forest Fish Passage Program

Turner culvert replacement-after
The Family Forest Fish Passage Program (FFFPP) assists private forestland owners in removing culverts and other stream crossing structures that keep trout, salmon, and other fish from reaching upstream habitat. Road culverts and other structures that are aging, too small, or improperly installed can block fish from reaching their spawning grounds, and young rearing salmon from reaching the ocean. The program funds the replacement of eligible barriers with new structures. Since 2003, some 376 landowners have taken advantage of the program to remove 433 barriers and open more than 1149 miles of stream habitat.
UPDATE NOTICE: The application deadline has changed to June 30 of each year. 

Who is eligible?

  • A private, or small forest landowner: You harvest less than 2 million board feet of timber each year from lands you own in Washington
  • The culvert is on forestland and associated with a road: The land is capable of supporting a merchantable stand of timber and is not being used for anything incompatible with growing timber.
  • The structure is on a fish-bearing stream: Any stream wider than 2 feet in western Washington (3 feet in eastern Washington) with a gradient less than 20 percent is considered potential fish habitat. A site-specific evaluation can determine if smaller or steeper streams also are fish-bearing.
  before and after fish barrier removal

How does it work?

  • Landowner applies for a culvert evaluation: Landowner submits an application by mail or online
  • Culvert is evaluated and prioritized: A field technician will contact you to make a site visit to assess the fish barrier.
  • Culvert is funded when it becomes a high priority: The culvert or other form of barrier presenting the highest benefit to fish habitat are fixed first.
  • Project sponsor manages the project: The program provides a project sponsor who will manage all aspects of the project including: engineering, permits, contractors, and accounts.
FFFPP helps private forestland owners remove fish-barrier culverts and other structures that keep trout, salmon, and other fish from reaching upstream habitat. The program funds the replacement of  eligible culverts or other barriers with new structures. Just by applying to the program the landowner is relieved of any state Forest Practices obligations to correct fish barriers.
Watch a video to find out more about the FFFPP program and hear landowners’ experiences with the program.