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Basis For Chinook Nonretention

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Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Brother Dave » Mon Sep 04, 2017 8:17 am

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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Aksigns » Mon Sep 04, 2017 4:19 pm

The good news is that every fisherman I've talked to found more kings on their hooks than they wanted to during coho season. Now if ADFG would stop writing fake news like this BS political piece we would all be better off.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Trnaround » Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:32 am

The way things went down this summer in SE was confusing to me. When the spring runs of Chinook were noted disastrously down the trolling was limited at first and then completely shut down (for the first time since hatchery fishing began). Not only was it shut down on the path of these threatened runs but all of SE. One of my confusions was that if these fish are so threatened and every fish counts why was the sport fishing not stopped as well. Then we left 31,000 kings on the table in the second opener when most of these fish were, as Dave's post shows, were southern bound fish. I understand being sensitive to Canada and Washington/ Oregon's escapements but Canada,Washington and Oregon didn't stop fishing for Kings. I probably don't have all of the information but to me it is very confusing.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Aksigns » Sat Sep 16, 2017 7:13 am

Nobody stopped fishing for kings except SE Alaska. I was at Pike Place Market yesterday and they have fresh kings on ice for sale. Caught in the Washington commercial fishery. The AK commercial allocation of kings were given to a different group than Alaskans by ADFG - end of story. I tried to respond to this post the day brother dave posted it but it got 86'd.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Sinnazat04 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:44 pm

Received this update via email on juvenile salmon off the Oregon, Washington Coasts which indicates a 20 year low based on current ocean conditions. Not sure how it relates to conditions in the eastern Gulf of Alaska, but it certainly is not cheerful.


The Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC) recently released information on the 2017 ocean conditions that greeted out-migrating juvenile salmon off the coast of Oregon and Washington this year. The NWFSC has been studying the ecology of juvenile salmon entering the ocean for the last 20 years, documenting environmental conditions such as sea surface temperatures and salinity, and biological factors such as food supply. Their findings show ocean conditions were particularly poor beginning in 2014, and worsened in 2015 and 2016. Now the early indications for 2017 are looking just as bad. Juvenile salmon surveys conducted this June by NOAA Fisheries off the Pacific Northwest resulted in "the fewest juvenile salmon of any of the last 20 years," suggesting that many of the salmon in the region that out-migrated to the ocean this year did not survive.




Much of the focus on ocean conditions has centered around a physical feature nicknamed the warm "Blob" (Bond et al. 2015). This circular mass of warm water began forming in the fall of 2013 and persisted through the fall of 2016. The Blob spread across the entire North Pacific, producing temperature anomalies of 1 to 4 degrees Celsius (2 to 7 degrees Fahrenheit) that extended for 1,000 miles and to depths of 1,000 feet. The Blob was formed by the "Ridiculously Resilient Ridge," a ridge of high pressure that was also responsible for the California drought. The Ridiculously Resilient Ridge prevented storms that usually move west across the Pacific from drawing heat out of the ocean, which also affected ocean currents.



The Blob along with the El Niño of 2016 have been linked to disruption in the ocean food chain, with harmful consequences for salmon, birds and marine mammals. Off the Oregon coast, sampling has documented at least 18 tropical copepod species never before seen that far north. Unfortunately, the abundant subtropical copepods recorded in 2015-2016 lack energy-rich lipids that form the base of the food chain, unlike the northern or cold-water copepods that are rich in lipids. Northern copepods are normally abundant during the summer months (May-September), and large numbers of northern copepodsare related to high returns of Chinook salmon in the Columbia River two years later. The cold-water copepod species thrive in cold, salty, nutrient-rich water typically associated with spring upwelling. The timing and duration of the cold-water copepod community, known as the biological spring transition, can have a big influence on the survival of juvenile coho and Chinook salmon-but in 2015 and 2016, this event never occurred.



The impacts of the ongoing poor ocean conditions that began in 2014 are just starting to be realized. Coho salmon that out-migrated from the Columbia system in 2014 and 2015, and returned to Bonneville Dam in the fall of 2015 and 2016, respectively, were some of the lowest runs on record (42,000 and 37,000 fish respectively). Columbia spring-run salmon that went to sea in 2014 returned at average levels in 2016, but 2015 out-migrants that returned as adults in 2017 only reached about half (55 percent) of the 10-year average passage at Bonneville. Columbia fall-run Chinook spend at least three years at sea, so juveniles that out-migrated in 2014 will return as adults this year. The poor ocean conditions in 2015-2017 should have a lasting impact on adult returns for the next several years.

It's not yet fully understood whether salmon out-migrating from California experience similar ocean conditions as the those in the Pacific Northwest. However, as we reported earlier in the year, salmon abundance in California measured by the Sacramento Index (SI) has been on a downward trend since 2014. This decline is likely the result of the severe California drought that began in 2012 and persisted through 2016. The majority of the 2017 fall run will be composed of fish that migrated out to sea in 2015, the driest of the five drought years, so it will be interesting to see how many return to spawn this year. During the drought, out-migrating salmon faced warmer river temperatures, reduced river outflow, and increased predation. While California fisheries managers tried to improve survival of hatchery smolts by trucking them to the San Francisco Bay, naturally spawned and reared salmon were left to fend for themselves. It could be that juvenile salmon may have survived drought conditions in the Central Valley only to encounter more harsh conditions once they finally reached the ocean.

Ocean surveys show poor outlook for Columbia salmon

September 2017

Ocean conditions for salmon headed to sea this year are very poor, according to recent NOAA Fisheries research surveys, and have a high likelihood of depressing salmon returns to the Columbia River in the next few years.

The outlook is described in a recent research memorandum from NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC), which has been studying the ecology of young salmon entering the ocean for more than 20 years. The research has helped reveal how conditions in the ocean affect salmon survival and, ultimately, how many salmon complete their life cycle to return to their home streams and spawn a new generation of fish.

NOAA Fisheries research surveys off the Pacific Northwest this year turned up among the fewest juvenile salmon of any of the last 20 years, an indication that many of the young fish that migrated to the ocean did not survive.
Graphic: Northwest Fisheries Science Center

NOAA Fisheries researchers regularly survey ocean conditions off the Pacific Northwest Coast, focusing especially on factors known as “ocean indicators” that can serve as barometers of salmon survival. They also assess the number and condition of juvenile salmon along the Oregon and Washington coastlines, since the survival of the fish during their first months at sea helps predict how many are likely to survive over the longer term.

NOAA Fisheries’ many years of ocean research have helped scientists develop online charts of ocean indicators that display the forecast for salmon returns in coming years. In the last few years the indicators have turned largely negative for Columbia River salmon, in large part because of unusually warm ocean temperatures, including the “warm blob,” a large swath of warm water that encompassed much of the West Coast beginning in 2013.

A 2016 map illustrates sea surface temperatures, with darker red representing temperatures farther above average. Unusually warm waters have encompassed much of the West Coast in recent years, affecting the marine ecosystem.
Graphic: NOAA/ESRL/PSD

“This is not just about salmon, however, it’s about an ocean ecosystem that is changing in ways that affect salmon and everything else out there,” said David Huff, manager of the NWFSC’s Estuarine and Ocean Ecology Program. “Remote methods of detecting changes to the ecosystem did not highlight the poor ocean conditions this year. For example, the warm blob has dissipated, so satellite imagery shows near-normal sea surface temperatures. It was only by getting out on the water and sampling directly that we were able to identify and describe local biological indicators.”

Researchers’ catch of juvenile salmon this year was among the lowest in the last 20 years, suggesting that the early survival of young fish was unusually low. Catches of other species such as smelt, herring, and anchovy were also low, a sign that predators such as seabirds near the mouth of the Columbia may have had to rely more heavily on young salmon just entering the ocean.

Surveys in recent years have also turned up record numbers of warmer-water species such as Pacific pompano and jack mackerel that previously had been scarce off the Pacific Northwest coast. Increased abundance of these warm-water species can have direct and indirect ecological impacts on salmon.

In contrast to salmon, the warm-water species Pacific pompano and jack mackerel have appeared in research nets in record numbers in the past few years. Jack mackerel often prey on juvenile salmon. Graphic: Northwest Fisheries Science Center

Moreover, warm ocean waters typically carry plankton with less of the fatty nutrients that young salmon need to thrive when they first go to sea, starving the food web from the bottom up. This year researchers noted that chlorophyll, which is a barometer of the plankton that helps sustain higher trophic levels, was at its lowest levels in 20 years.

At the same time, tiny marine crustaceans called copepods that signal favorable conditions for salmon have remained at low levels since 2014, researchers said.

The results indicate that salmon fisheries may face some lean times in the next few years. Biologists will report on 2017 salmon returns later this year, and will issue forecasts for 2018 in early March. Those forecasts will help shape expectations for 2018 fishing seasons.

“While the news is not good, this new information helps us anticipate what’s coming,” said NWFSC Director Kevin Werner. “We cannot change what the ocean is doing in the short term but this scientific information can help us make good decisions about how best to manage and protect salmon in light of these adverse conditions.”

The findings underscore the vast influence the ocean exerts over salmon survival and the importance of providing salmon with healthy freshwater habitat so they can weather poor ocean conditions and take advantage of favorable conditions when they return. That is a central focus of NOAA Fisheries’ recovery plans for threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead.

“As difficult as it is for salmon right now, tribes, watershed groups, and others across the region have worked hard to improve freshwater salmon habitat,” said Michael Tehan, Assistant Regional Administrator for the Interior Columbia Basin Office of NOAA Fisheries’ West Coast Region. “That’s essential for sustaining salmon through these tough times so they can rebound when ocean conditions support it.”

For more information:

Salmon Returns and Ocean Conditions (NWFSC fact sheet
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Brother Dave » Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:42 pm

I'm a bit surprised but happy to see a winter troll opening for kings after all.

http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/appli ... 817402.pdf
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Trnaround » Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:09 am

i am happy and surprised as well. Happy for those that participate in the winter fishing for Kings and surprised that management would take the chance at catching SE Ak wild Kings. I get that they will monitor the results in Dec and decide if there will be a follow up season into April but if they smack these Kings in Oct, Nov and Dec they will be closing the door after the horses have left. It could lead to further closures and restrictions on the spring troll fishery as well if the first and second winter periods have high numbers of SEAKs. They left 31,000 Kings on the table to avoid catching the SEAKS in August for the same reasoning. Still confused but happy for now.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby duck » Wed Sep 27, 2017 7:48 pm

The fish and game office in Sitka told me on two different occasions that we "may" get to fish kings through the middle of march. Then it will be shut down until the middle of July. We will have no spring fishery. They also said that the charter boats will not be shut down because that is when they make most of there money. Something seems not quite right about that if we are trying to protect the southeast stock.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Trnaround » Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:00 am

Seems like there is that "caching" sound everytime science meets politics. Just speculating here but if there was a complete non retention of Kings next spring the charter fleet would have no salmon to target until the Coho show up in July. Not good for bookings, not good for hotels restaurants etc. and if Canada and Washington doesn't alter their sport fishing they would have an nice increase in their bookings. It would be much easier to shut down the troll fleet in SE and save a few fish that way than take a loss in the tourist dollars to that extent. "Chaching" there is that sound again. Hopefully this isn't what is coming down and fisheries remembers why these hatcheries and aquaculture enhancements were created in the first place and remember who contributes to the cost recovery and funding for them. "Chaching"
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Trnaround » Sat Oct 28, 2017 3:29 am

AKsighns, I just noticed your posts, I don't think they were posted in context or maybe I missed them ...strange. Not much participation on this site lately maybe everyone is out catching those winter king$.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Aksigns » Sat Oct 28, 2017 5:38 pm

Thank you for finally posting them. I can't figure this troll fishery out yet, but I'm not about to give up. I still am wondering why there has been so little complaining by the troll fleet about the loss of those 30000 kings this august. I also am not buying the reason ADFG gave for the closure. They still will not release their (our) data on escapements now that the run is over. The spring comfish meeting will be interesting thats all I know.
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Trnaround » Sun Oct 29, 2017 7:39 am

There is a good article "The Director's Desk" in the ATA newsletter that discusses the issue of Chinook retention and conservation. I like the conclusion "Fish first".
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Re: Basis For Chinook Nonretention

Postby Aksigns » Sun Oct 29, 2017 8:04 pm

That was a good read. I'll agree that fish first is a good motto to live by. I just would like to see the numbers that ADFG is using for the basis of the decisions. They won't release them! That smells fishy to me - sorry for the pun. I couldn't help myself.
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