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Fish & Wildlife | Sustainability | Environment | Water | Science | Land use | Oregon Field Guide

Lake Abert Dries Up

Oregon’s third largest lake, Lake Abert dried up in 2014 for the first time since the 1930s. 3 million migrating shorebirds depend on it for food. Drought has hit that region of the state but some people wonder whether human use of Abert’s only water source made things worse. Under Oregon law, Lake Abert has no legal right to any water at all. In March, 2015, the Oregon Water Resources Department recommended approving the extension of the permit of the Rivers End Ranch dam, which frequently blocks the flow to Lake Abert. 

Lake Abert Described
Rivers End Ranch 1991 Permit
1991 DEQ Rivers End Conditions
Critical Lake Level Report – 1994 Report for ODFW
Ecology of Lake Abert – 1992 Report for ODFW
Audubon Bird Significance Report
Brine Shrimp in Lake Abert
Producer - Vince Patton
Videographers - Todd Sonflieth,  Tom Shrider, Frank Swanson
Editor - Todd Sonflieth
Additional Video & Photos - Ron Larson, Keith Kreuz, ODFW-Crystal McMahon,
USGS Landsat, USFS-Jim Walls
Animations - Todd Sonflieth
Data Analysis - Tony Schick
Special Thanks - Julie Keoberle-NRCS

drought Lake Abert Chewaucan River water rights Rivers End Ranch brine shrimp salt water salinity irrigation ranching ranchers

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Giant Waves; Lake Abert Dries Up (2610)

Oregon Field Guide: Episode #2610
Original Broadcast: March 19, 2015