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NW Fishletter
NWF.302/April 19, 2012
Spring Chinook Run Later Than Ever

Columbia Basin harvest managers have extended the spring chinook season two weeks for recreational anglers because so few spring chinook have appeared this year. The most likely culprit is the La Niña-inspired cold water that has kept the springers from migrating upriver past Bonneville Dam. So far only 602 springers have been counted at the dam, the 10-year average by April 16 is nearly 18,000 fish, with half the run over by May 7. ...more

Increasing Ocean CO2 May Affect Food Webs, Salmon Populations

Scary stories in The Seattle Times and elsewhere a few years ago about the plight of West Coast oyster farmers wrestling with increasing CO2 levels in coastal waters painted a bleak picture of their future. But the farms have survived, and are still cranking out plenty of oysters, despite more than 22 million tons of CO2 absorbed by marine waters every day. ...more

Ocean Harvest Regimes Announced By Pacific Fishery Management Council

The Pacific Fishery Management Council has picked its options for the 2012 recreational and commercial salmon seasons off the West Coast, and sent them to NOAA Fisheries for approval. This year's planned fishing regime reflects a huge rebound in California fall chinook stocks, and recreational fishers are already reporting great catches from Santa Cruz north. ...more

Study Says Chinook Bypass Mortality Similar To Turbine Passage, Spill

A recent peer-reviewed article by NOAA Fisheries scientists says juvenile PIT-tagged chinook salmon held for months after reaching Bonneville Dam showed little evidence of latent mortality from passing two to five bypass systems at federal dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers compared to fish that were not detected--i.e., smolts that passed the concrete via either spill or turbines. ...more

La Niña Now Nada, Say Aussies, As Equatorial Pacific Heats Up

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology has declared the latest La Niña episode officially over. In their March 27 update, the Aussies said key indicators in the equatorial Pacific were now at neutral levels and close to what conditions were last August. ...more

BPA Spends Another Million To Protect Columbia Estuary

BPA has teamed up with the Columbia Land Trust to purchase 560 acres near the mouth of the Columbia that will protect more habitat for fish and wildlife, including ESA-listed salmon and steelhead in the Columbia Basin. ...more

Science Panel Reports On Latest Review Of F&W Proposals

The Independent Scientific Review Board has released its final review of 71 proposals dealing with resident fish, data management and regional coordination in the BPA-funded Columbia Basin F&W program. The Northwest Power and Conservation Council will be taking public comment on the review until May 4. ...more

BPA Oversupply Management Protocol Still Looking For Love

Seventeen parties filed comments or protests at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on March 6 concerning BPA's Oversupply Management Protocol developed to deal with overgeneration issues as the wind power industry has grown in the Northwest. ...more

Treaty Group Wants Columbia River Ops To Favor Power Generation

The Columbia River Treaty Power Group has issued a formal position statement on factors that should be considered in reviewing the Columbia River Treaty between the U.S. and Canada. ...more

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