Richmond Harbor Dredging

Major Dredging Construction Project that Required 24/7 Pacific Herring Monitoring.


  • Complete maintenance dredging of the Federal Channel and Inner Harbor at the Port of Richmond
  • Conduct 24 hour a day Pacific herring monitoring on the dredge barges

24276 richmond dredging

Project Description

Maintenance dredging of the Port of Richmond Inner Harbor Channel was necessary to maintain passageways for the active port.  The Pacific herring is a protected fishery, and dredging operations within the Pacific herring spawning season were unavoidable.  As part of the approval to conduct dredging during the Pacific herring spawning season of December through February, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) issued a conditional waiver requiring fisheries monitoring to take place during dredging activities.

Pacific herring eggs in the intertidal zone

Pacific herring eggs in the intertidal zone

Working in coordination with the two dredge contractors, R.E. Staite Engineering, Inc. and The Dutra Group, WRA provided fisheries monitoring during all dredge activities.  Because of the large project area, dredge operations were conducted 24 hours a day seven days a week.  WRA provided round the clock fisheries monitoring for Pacific herring over the three month spawning window.  During this period, a multi-day Pacific herring spawn occurred in the project area.  WRA successfully identified the start of the spawning event and coordinated with the dredge contractors and CDFW to establish a no-work buffer to protect the herring eggs.  Due to pre-project planning and the identification of potential high risk spawning locations by WRA, dredging activity was able to continue outside of the buffer which avoided project delay.

Maintenance dredging at this site was completed in 2015.


  • Fisheries Monitoring
  • Weekly Monitoring Reports