Little Shasta River Efficiency Study

Client: Cowley and Hart Ranches, California Department of Fish and Game

Funder: Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission (NOAA Award NA07NMF4540337)

Location: Little Shasta, CA

Date: 2008 - 2012

In 2008, the owners of the Cowley and Hart Ranches – two privately-owned beef cattle ranches in the Shasta Valley – initiated a cooperative study with the California Department of Fish and Game to investigate potential water efficiency improvements that would allow the ranches to sustain beef cattle production while also reducing diversions from the Little Shasta River in support of fish habitat.

As the technical contractor on this project, Davids Engineering spearheaded the formation of a plan to measure and quantify existing water uses at each ranch, and then to propose and rank specific water conservation measures. Key components of this effort included:
•Design and implementation of a monitoring program to measure diversions and losses from irrigation ditches
•A hydrogeologic investigation to assess the potential production of additional groundwater on the ranches
•Development of water balances for the ranch irrigation systems and irrigated fields
•Formulation of water conservation measures, including management practices and proposed improvements to facilities

This project resulted in a comprehensive evaluation of the ranches’ water use, and a suite of potential measures that could be implemented by the ranch owners to achieve their dual goals of increasing Little Shasta River streamflow while sustaining beef cattle production.

All Projects

Tehama County Groundwater Sustainability Plan Implementation 

Colusa Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan Revisions

Madera Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan Revisions 

Chowchilla Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan Revisions

Moore Siphon Replacement Project

Dos Rios Ranch SB88 Compliance and Crop Planning Analysis

Hart Ranch On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Improvements

Orland Project Distribution System Modernization

Water Management Plan Compliance Mapping

Agricultural Development Feasibility Assessment

Analysis of Effects of Water Management on Evapotranspiration from Managed Wetlands

Garden Highway Mutual Water Company Water Control Projects

Richvale Irrigation District Phase I Infrastructure Modernization

Joint Water Districts Board SCADA

Sutter Mutual Water Company Modernization Support

Shasta Valley Groundwater Monitoring

Time Series Evapotranspiration and Applied Water Estimates from Remote Sensing

Customer Delivery Measurement Data Collection and Accounting (RemoteTracker Implementation)

SGMA Technical Support Services and Prop 1 Stressed Basin Grant Project

Efficiency Conservation Definite Plan and Conservation Program

Boundary Outflow Measurements

Oakdale Irrigation District Agricultural Water Management Plan

Yuba Water Agency Agricultural Water Managment Plan

Feather River Agricultural Water Management Plan (FRRAWMP)

Colusa Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan Development

Madera and Chowchilla Subbasins Groundwater Sustainability Plans

2022 Verification Project for Madera County GSAs

Little Shasta River Efficiency Study

Mill Creek Flow Measurement Improvements

Kettle Spring Improvement Project

Antelope Creek Fish Passage Improvement Project

Conservation Planning and Operations Decision Support