NORTH DAKOTA (KXNET) — Culverts help a lot of North Dakota land channel water from one area to another, to help with flooding, making sure fish can move from one body of water to another.

But a lot of times, the culverts need to be fixed and repaired.

Now, there is a federal initiative to fix culverts and make sure excess water is safely directed in our state.

The National Culvert Removal, Replacement, and Restoration Grant Program is available to help replace, remove, and repair culverts that meaningfully improve or restore fish passage.

Chinook, which is found here in North Dakota, use culverts regularly.

Also called the king salmon, Chinook are stocked in Lake Sakakawea and provide a key benefit to our ecosystem. 

And culverts protect us from flooding year-round.

“I would add that when you don’t have the right kind of culverts set up, it can make it more likely for there to be flooding on the roadways. So really it impacts everybody. We’re going to be able to improve the situation. Removing or replacing, or repairing these culverts so that fish and people can get to where they need to go,” said the U.S. Transportation Secretary, Pete Buttigieg. 

North Dakota Game and Fish has been working on culvert projects over the past few years, which have drastically improved fish populations statewide.