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NW Fishletter
NWF.209/January 31, 2006
Feds Call For Less Harvest Of ESA Fish--Everywhere

A senior Bush administration official blindsided a convention of 300 wild salmon worshippers last week to announce a new initiative that will look at ways of reducing the harvest of ESA-listed salmon both in the Columbia River and in the ocean between Astoria and Alaska. ...more

BPA Picks Short-Term Replacements For Fish Passage Center

The Bonneville Power Administration announced last week that the Battelle-operated Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, one of nine Department of Energy labs situated throughout the country, will take over coordination of the data analysis functions previously conducted by the soon-to-be-defunct Fish Passage Center. Five proposals were received by BPA to take over the FPC work; that included analyzing potential flow and spill measures to benefit fish passage. ...more

Oregon Coastal Coho Don't Make ESA List

The federal government announced last week that the Oregon coastal coho stock, listed as a "threatened species" under the ESA in 1998, will not need legal protection under the law in the future. The coastal coho stocks plummeted in the 1990s when ocean conditions went sour, but have rebounded strongly since then. Their status has been in limbo since 2001 when they became the focus of a court case [Alsea Valley v. NMFS] that ultimately forced NOAA Fisheries to change its listing policy to accommodate many hatchery stocks. ...more

Too Early To Evaluate '05 Summer Spill, Says Science Panel

The Independent Scientific Advisory Board that provides advice to NOAA Fisheries and the Northwest Power and Conservation Council has concluded that the effectiveness of last summer's court-ordered spill on juvenile fall chinook will not be known until adult fish return over the next few years. The ISAB was asked to look into the spill issue and the preliminary analyses produced to gage its effectiveness. ...more

Karier To Chair Northwest Power And Conservation Council

Tom Karier, one of Washington's two representatives to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council, was elected to chair the four-state forum for the coming year at the Jan. 18 NPCC meeting in Vancouver, Wash. ...more

Columbia Harvest Managers Hope Spring Season Lasts Past April

Washington and Oregon fish agencies announced last week a plan to allow sports fishers to target hatchery chinook in the Columbia River below the 1-5 bridge through April 19. And they say their staff expect the season last much longer than that, according to ODFW's Curt Melcher. Managers are a bit gun shy after only about half of last year's pre-season spring prediction actually materialized. The same situation occurred on the Willamette, when only 61,000 chinook showed up out of a 117,000 pre-season forecast. ...more

Will Northwest Salmon Be Around In 100 Years?

A standing room only crowd of 300 salmon wonks met in Portland last week to hear several prescriptions for how to keep Northwest salmon populations in decent shape by 2100. The question seemed to strike a receptive note in the region, since another 150 people were turned away due to space limitations. ...more

Corps Calls For Public Comment On Flood Control Report

The Corps of Engineers has just released a draft report that identifies possible new ways of handling its flood control obligations while providing more water to meet flow objectives for fish migration in the Columbia River. ...more

"It's Still The Ocean, Stupid"--10 Years Of NW Fishletter

This newsletter has only been around for two or three salmon life cycles, but it has been on scene long enough to track the emergence of salmon recovery science from the Dark Ages of speculation when seven data points (and two of them highly questionable) on fish survival were used to justify the flow/survival relationship that has been used to justify the expensive flow and spill regimes in the Columbia River. ...more

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