The Passage Assessment Database (PAD) is an ongoing map-based inventory of known and potential barriers to anadromous fish in California, compiled and maintained through a cooperative interagency agreement. The PAD compiles currently available fish passage information from many different sources, allows past and future barrier assessments to be standardized and stored in one place, and enables the analysis of cumulative effects of passage barriers in the context of overall watershed health.
The database is set up to capture basic information about each potential barrier. It is designed to be flexible. As the database grows, other modules may be added to increase data detail and complexity.
For the PAD to be useful as a restoration tool, the data within the PAD need to accurately depict the on-the ground reality of fish passage constraints. This requires the PAD to retrieve new barrier data and updates to existing sites and to have verified and vetted the information it receives. In 2013, new PAD data standards were designed to standardize this process, and refine the data in PAD making the data more robust. The new standards have been implemented for all new records since 2013. In 2014 and 2021, the standards were further refined. In the future, the standards will be implemented for all existing records. The data standards including a description of the database, data collection procedures and data quality and limitations can be found in the combined PAD methodology and data standards document.
Preferred dataset citation: California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Passage Assessment Database, (Month Year) Version
Data categories in the PAD database were chosen to meet the needs of broader fish passage improvement community and were reviewed by the member agencies of the California Fish Passage Forum. Some of the most important data collected about barriers are those related to the location, ownership, structure type, and the degree of impassibility (passage status).
To standardize data entry sheets for collecting new barrier/stream structure information, the Fish Passage Forum developed a Rapid Entry Field Form - First Pass Fish Passage Data Sheet. This one-page form is intended for fast simple inventories of all types of fish passage problems and it can be used during any other type of stream survey or restoration work. For other standardized field forms, please consult the CDFW Restoration Manual (Part IX).
All PAD records are stored with geographic location information where each site is mapped and assigned latitude/longitude coordinates. Each barrier record is also indexed to the high-resolution National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) developed by USGS at a 1:24,000 scale. The NHD is used to assign a stream address to a PAD record by capturing the unique identifier for each NHD line segment and the measure along the segment that represents the barrier location.
Referencing each barrier record to a common hydrography (the NHD), many different data formats brought into the PAD are standardized, and become easy to combine with other fisheries data tied to the same hydrography.
The PAD was compiled using information about fish passage from a large number of sources. These data sets were originally created for a number of different purposes, from general stream habitat surveys to rigorous assessments of fish barriers. The quality of the data in the PAD will vary depending on the data source, including different amounts of detail and varying degrees of accuracy in location descriptions. The complete list of data sources contains currently more than 150 individuals, agencies and organizations. Each data source and related set of documents is assigned an identification number to ensure that it can be easily tracked. Many fish passage documents can be viewed in an electronic format in the Document Library.
Feedback regarding the accuracy and updates of the data presented here are welcome. Please fill out the form for providing updates to the PAD and email or mail this information to:
Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission
1010 Riverside Pkwy, West Sacramento, CA 95605
Ph: (916) 376-1706