Chickahominy Reservoir (Harney)

Reachcode: 17120004002775 | Area: 484.7 acres | Shoreline: 11.8 mi | View on Interactive Map

(From Atlas of Oregon Lakes, Johnson et al. 1985).  Chickahominy Reservoir (also known as Clusters Lake) was created during 1951 and 1952 by the construction of a dam on Chickahominy Creek. It was built with private funds to provide storage of irrigation water for the Silver Creek Ranch. However, as of 1970 the reservoir had never filled to capacity and it proved to be inadequate for its intended purpose. It has since been obtained by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife for sport fishing, and has developed into one of the best fisheries in southeastern Oregon. The reservoir had received its first plant of fish in 1957, a load of Kamloops trout, which prospered in spite of competition for food with an abundant population of rough fish. Despite a series of treatments, the rough fish were not eliminated until the reservoir dried up completely in 1968, and no trash fish have been recorded since that time. In recent years stocking has been primarily fingerling rainbow trout, and fish as large as 32 inches have been caught. The reservoir is open all year and winter ice fishing has been good. In 1981 there were 73,175 visitor days, of which 24,880 were for fishing only. Land ownership around the reservoir is almost totally private, with the exception of about 40 acres near the dam which are administered by the Bureau of Land Management; recreational facilities and a boat launch are provided by the B.L.M. The drainage basin is a semi-arid rangeland covered by sagebrush, with sparse stands of junipers at higher elevations.

Morphometrically, the reservoir is shallow with a maximum depth at full pool of only 28 feet. Bottom material is composed primarily of silt, lava rock, and detritus from decaying vegetation. The concentrations of ions are above average for Oregon lakes, because of the arid climate of the area. During summer, surface water pH rises and sometimes exceeds 8.5. During mid to late summer surface water temperatures become quite warm. There is some growth of macrophytes in the shallow areas, and the reservoir contains some submerged and decaying sagebrush. Frequent blooms of planktonic algae occur during the summer, including species of blue-green algae, and there are reports of occasional winter fish kills owing to oxygen depletion after the die off of the planktonic algae and submerged macrophytes. The reservoir is in fact quite eutrophic, with high phosphorus concentration and limited water transparency.

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No mussel data available.

The list of plants below includes results of aquatic plant surveys conducted by the Center for Lakes and Reservoirs as well as aquatic invasive plant species detections that have been reported to iMap Invasives: an online, GIS-based invasive species reporting and querying tool.

Plants listed in the table below are categorized as native to Oregon, on the Oregon Department of Agriculture’s (ODA’s) Noxious Weed List, on the Federal Noxious Weed List, or non-native but not listed as noxious. Federal Noxious Weed List plants are plants determined by USDA to be serious threats to U.S. agriculture, irrigation, navigation, public health or the environment (7 C.F.R. 360.200). The ODA Noxious Weed categories are:

ODA Class A - weeds either unknown or with small enough infestations to make eradication or containment possible; targeted for eradication or intensive control.

ODA Class B - regionally abundant weeds (may have limited distribution in some counties); targeted for local/regional control on case-by-case basis.

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Date Species Status Source
Aug. 6, 2013 Elodea canadensis (common elodea, Canadian waterweed) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Myriophyllum sibiricum (northern watermilfoil) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Potamogeton sp. (pondweed) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Potamogeton richardsonii (Richardson's pondweed) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Nitella sp. (stonewort) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Ranunculus aquatilis (water-buttercup) Native CLR
Aug. 6, 2013 Persicaria amphibia (water smartweed) Native CLR