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NW Fishletter
NWF.280/October 8, 2010
Snake River Fall Chinook Coming On Strong

This year's fall chinook run in the Snake River has already surpassed last year's 24,000-fish return (hatchery and wild) counted at Ice Harbor Dam. A new modern record is at hand, and it's nearly twice last year's size. ...more

Late Surge Of Fall Chinook Confounds Harvest Managers

Columbia Basin harvest managers were caught off guard after lower-river gillnetters caught more than twice as many chinook as expected on the night of Sept. 22, revealing that a strong pulse of late-running fall chinook was headed upriver. ...more

New Sockeye Record For Baker Lake

More than 22,500 Baker Lake sockeye have returned to the Skagit River this year, says utility Puget Sound Energy. ...more

Juvenile Fish Survival Good, But Fewer Barged In 2010

This year's survival of juvenile spring chinook and steelhead from the Snake River and down the Columbia has turned out to be one of the better ones, despite a relatively poor water-year. ...more

Toxics Action Plan Takes Shape

The Environmental Protection Agency released a 61-point action plan Sept. 24 designed to increase awareness and reduce toxic pollutants in the Columbia Basin, but relies on current funding to pay for nearly half of it. The rest depends on Congress. The plan recommends the federal government designate priority funding for the effort, similar to efforts targeting the Great Lakes, Chesapeake Bay, and Puget Sound. ...more

BPA Reviews High-Water Operations In Wake Of June Event

As BPA was wrestling with high runoff and heavy winds during the first two weeks of June, the agency was also contending with outages on the California and British Columbia interties that limited its ability to export excess emissions-free power, according to a 13-page review of Bonneville's operations during the event. ...more

Ocean Too Full Of Salmon?

A new paper by Northwest fisheries scientists says that wild pink and sockeye salmon populations on both sides of the Pacific have increased by more than 65 percent since the shift in ocean climate regimes in 1975-76, but increasing numbers of hatchery fish may be crowding them out. Since the 1990s, about 4.5 billion hatchery smolts have been released into the ocean every year and "have important management implications in terms of density-dependent processes and conservation of wild salmon populations." They recommend that management agencies improve their estimates of hatchery fish that are harvested or reach spawning grounds. ...more

New Study: Fish Issues Trump Whether Or Not Columbia River Treaty Ends

Details of the "Called Upon" flood control protocols that will be in place after 2024 regardless of whether or not the Columbia River Treaty is terminated have more serious consequences for the U.S. fish operations than other treaty provisions, according to a new report. ...more

Analysis: "Is Everything I Read Wrong?"

A few weeks ago, I was approached by an old acquaintance at a wedding reception who wanted to discuss an article about fish he had read that morning in the Seattle Times. I was a little stunned, since the only interest I had seen him express about Northwest salmon runs up to that point had been while he was holding a large fork. ...more

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