Squaxin Natural Resources blog: The myth of the “stinky mudflats” on a restored Deschutes Estuary

From the Squaxin Island Tribe’s natural resources blog:

One of the myths that defenders of Capitol Lake like to mention is the danger of ever present mud flats on a restored Capitol Lake. Obviously, they like to point out, a quiet and peaceful dammed river is much preferable to mud flats. What they don’t mention is the scientific studies that point out how untrue this is.

The recent publication by the Capitol Lake Improvement and Protection Association compared a photo of the current lake with one during the extended drawdown two years ago. That in itself is an inaccurate comparison since that drawdown took the lake to an extremely low water level for an extended period of time. Compared to the twice daily flooding of the estuary, this is a pretty unfair comparison.

If the estuary were restored, we wouldn’t be trading a beautiful lake for a muddy swamp. Rather, we’re trading a full basin that is polluted and sick for a basin that is full 80 percent of the time and is healthy.