Friday, September 18, 2009

Columbia River Estuary

As biologists and policymakers look for areas to concentrate restoration efforts, an increasing amount of attention is being paid to Columbia River estuary. Estuarine and early marine survival are thought to more or less control within cohort returns, so if biologists want higher returns a good place to start is understanding the estuary. A recent scientific conference brought together some of the brightest minds working on the Columbia estuary today. Among the topics discussed were tagging studies designed to track juvenile salmon survival through the estuary, the threat of invasive species in the Columbia estuary, the ecological role intertidal habitats in salmon survival and how best to direct research money. The 235 kilometers from Bonneville dam to the mouth of the river are considered the estuary however by far the highest mortality is observed in the lowest reaches. More information at the Columbia Basin Bulletin.

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