The Friends of the Garcia River (FrOG) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the restoration and preservation of the Garcia River and the intelligent civic planning within it's watershed. FrOG believes the Garcia River is an important component of a healthy environment for nature and society.
For thousands of years, the Garcia has been the central feature of a natural ecosystem draining vast acreage of coastal forest watershed into the Pacific Ocean and providing a habitat where plants and wildlife flourished. Once this river ran clear and fast, thick with Steelhead, Coho, Chinook and Pink Salmon hatchlings that fed into the legendary Pacific salmon fisheries. Now the salmon fishery is down to less than 5% of what it was less than 30 years ago! Only Steelhead and Coho Salmon remain in the Garcia and the Coho are only a remnant population.
In recent decades, careless logging filled it with silt, slash, discarded equipment and scarred it with fast-eroding access roads. Streamside trees that cooled and shaded it were removed. Recent instream gravel mining operations have further degraded the waterway as a habitat and caused the loss of shading, feed and channel structure.
FrOG and its membership oppose these irresponsible exploitations through education and appearance before legislative bodies. We also seek to restore the stream to its original healthy condition.
FrOG's approach to citizen involvement has been the gathering of data and its presentation to the decision makers, agencies and the public. Among these are data on, fish and instream gravel mining. We engage in cooperative ventures with public agencies and do restoration work with private landowners. In this manner, we collect rainfall and stage data in cooperation with the Mendocino County Water Agency and the National Weather Service, NOAA. This information can now be seen in near real time on the web.
It is sometimes necessary to hire lawyers to protect the public interests. Members of the FrOG Board attend training sessions and schools for restoration, monitoring and legal issues. FrOG is a member of a number of environmental organizations and we have an extensive library of information.