Thursday, November 25, 2010

Puget Sound Steelhead Issues Entering the Mainstream

Check out this informative and well written article on the state of steelhead returns in Puget Sound. It's great to see objective information about the management of our steelhead populations and what role hatcheries are playing in policy decisions around the area financially reaching mainstream audiences. Many hatchery programs in the sound have seen ocean survival below 1% during the last 10 years and returns of wild fish hit record lows the last three seasons. WDFW just announced that is will be closing significant portions of many Puget Sound Rivers to ensure hatchery egg take goals begging the question, if hatchery programs designed to enhance harvest opportunity are failing to meet even that modest goal, whats the justification for the program? The state is struggling financially and closing some of the hatchery programs around the Puget Sound would save money while simultaneously alleviating some of ecological and genetic impacts on wild populations.

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