SEATTLE -- Federal fisheries managers are proposing to designate critical habitat for two threatened species of fish.
NOAA Fisheries said Monday it wants to designate about 2,288 miles of freshwater and estuarine habitat in Washington and Oregon for lower Columbia River coho salmon. The agency is also proposing about 1,880 miles of critical habitat in Puget Sound for Puget Sound steelhead.
Lower Columbia River coho was listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act in 2005, while Puget Sound steelhead was listed in 2007.
Once critical habitat is designated, federal agencies must make sure their actions are not likely to destroy or adversely modify critical habitat.
NOAA is accepting public comments on the proposal until April 15.