WDFW Announces Puget Sound river closures for 2012

KerryS

Ignored Member
#76
And if you eliminate the hatchery programs and the native stocks keep declining?
Wild steelhead are all but gone now. I seriously doubt the people of this state will make the sacrifices needed to bring them back. What does this have to do with the continuation of hatcheries? Nothing in my opinion and it is not justification for them either. Hatcheries are a blight on our streams
 
#78
Sean, nice off handed challenge to my cred. To answer your question, I have fished nearly every river in western WA; some certainly way more than others. Also, as an active TU member (more recently TU Life Member) for the past 25 years, and having served on the board of the now decommissioned King County Chapter of NW Salmon & Steelhead Council, I have spent considerable time working on efforts to improve river system habitat and wild steelhead & salmon recovery -- the Green River in particular.

Ever been to Flaming Geyser State Park and the feeding ponds? -- I led the reconditioning of those and managed them for many years. Ever heard about the wild fish capture program, where fish are re-located above Howard Hansen Dam so they can use the watershed for natural rearing? -- I was on the team that help set that up. I also performed stream survey analysis and worked on fencing and culvert changes to Newaukum Creek for steelhead and salmon recovery.

...and you?
Hatchery steelhead are a colossal waste of time, money and energy in the puget sound they create about 2 weeks of "good" fishing in terminal areas in a 12 month calendar year and with less than 1% surviving it takes thousands and thousands of smolts flooded into the system to yield results. All those doomed smolts compete with struggling wild stocks.

Your credentials and words are quite conflicting.
 

Lugan

Joe Streamer
#79
Wait, I thought ocean conditions were the agreed upon (by fish bioligists) cause of the decline of PS steelhead stocks. Has that changed?
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#80
Wait, I thought ocean conditions were the agreed upon (by fish bioligists) cause of the decline of PS steelhead stocks. Has that changed?
Ocean survival is one of the main culprits but you couple this with a much degraded river habitat and the fewer fish that survive the ocean are not enough to maintain the species viability. There were likely periods of poor ocean survival many times in the past but with a pristine river habitat the fewer fish that would survive the ocean were better able to maintain a viable population until the ocean conditions improved. This is no longer the case. You have to look at the entire life cycle of steelhead and all of the environments they encounter during that life cycle.
 
#81
http://wildsteelheadcoalition.org/w.../01/Skagit-Wild-escapement-chart1978-2010.png


Ok some help here in 1779 we had about the same number of wild Steelhead in the Skagit - over the next 20years (let me add the "good old days") we had great returns -

Before 1979 what did our hatchery program look like?
Was it much bigger, the same or much less than 2000?
What was different from 2000 to 2004 - WOW would it be nice to just see 2004 numbers in her. Did we start to limit our hatchery production in 2000?
From 1981 to 1991 did the CnR fishery limit spawing and the health of the run? That has to be asked - as much as hate to say it. If I remember my history the Skagit closed in Feb up until 1980/81 somewhere in there.

Thanks to the WSC for posting that info on their new site - its a good new look.
Chris,
I can't take the time to research this now but I remember when I was a kid ( 60's & 70's), fishing the skagit on the last day, and fishing lake shannon on opening day of trout season, which was in april. I don't remember when that changed( there are some really foggy years in there). Back then Barnaby slough hatchery was going strong.
 

Ringlee

Doesn't care how you fish Moderator
#82
http://wildsteelheadcoalition.org/w.../01/Skagit-Wild-escapement-chart1978-2010.png


Ok some help here in 1779 we had about the same number of wild Steelhead in the Skagit - over the next 20years (let me add the "good old days") we had great returns -

Before 1979 what did our hatchery program look like?
Was it much bigger, the same or much less than 2000?
What was different from 2000 to 2004 - WOW would it be nice to just see 2004 numbers in her. Did we start to limit our hatchery production in 2000?
From 1981 to 1991 did the CnR fishery limit spawing and the health of the run? That has to be asked - as much as hate to say it. If I remember my history the Skagit closed in Feb up until 1980/81 somewhere in there.

Thanks to the WSC for posting that info on their new site - its a good new look.
Chris,

Here is the hatchery smolt releases on the Skagit from 1978- 2008. The 2000's had some of the highest plants seen (excluding 1997). I haven't seen the data prior to this so I can't answer your pre 1979 question.

1978 358,955
1979 308,321
1980 194,697
1981 245,393
1982 271,793
1983 370,017
1984 336,417
1985 298,357
1986 136,096
1987 264,376
1988 286,833
1989 127,032
1990 196,893
1991 157,842
1992 364,161
1993 366,591
1994 354,122
1995 289,052
1996 328,461
1997 583,720
1998 445,434
1999 449,302
2000 463,460
2001 273,712
2002 513,330
2003 529,821
2004 466,100
2005 517,000
2006 511,560
2007 235,010
2008 174,000
 

Smalma

Active Member
#84
Kerry -
I could only easily find the following

Release
Year % return
1983 2.09
1984 2.16
1985 2.38
1986 2.64
1987 2.04
1988 0.63
1989 3.13
1990 1.10
1991 0.86
1992 0.55
.
.
.
1999 0.92
2000 0.63
2001 0.05
2002 0.78
2003 0.30
2004 0.46
2005 0.24
2006 0.39

Tight lines
Curt
 

freestoneangler

Not to be confused with Freestone
#85
Wild steelhead are all but gone now. I seriously doubt the people of this state will make the sacrifices needed to bring them back. What does this have to do with the continuation of hatcheries? Nothing in my opinion and it is not justification for them either. Hatcheries are a blight on our streams
If by making "the sacrifice" means eliminating fishing, then no I agree we won't. Why should we if the other much larger issues affecting wild stocks (hatchery for that matter) are going to remain unchanged? When we see the commercial's and tribes stop fishing, I'm almost certain sport fishers would sign on as well. Asking the those who represents maybe 1% of the declining numbers to stop fishing is a fools play, and it will not change the course.
 

freestoneangler

Not to be confused with Freestone
#86
Hatchery steelhead are a colossal waste of time, money and energy in the puget sound they create about 2 weeks of "good" fishing in terminal areas in a 12 month calendar year and with less than 1% surviving it takes thousands and thousands of smolts flooded into the system to yield results. All those doomed smolts compete with struggling wild stocks.

Your credentials and words are quite conflicting.
Well Sean, at least I have been involved hands on at trying to make a difference and that's apparently more than the words you have offered up. As for conflicting, all of the projects described were sponsored by WDFW and the regional Biologists.
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#87
If by making "the sacrifice" means eliminating fishing, then no I agree we won't. Why should we if the other much larger issues affecting wild stocks (hatchery for that matter) are going to remain unchanged? When we see the commercial's and tribes stop fishing, I'm almost certain sport fishers would sign on as well. Asking the those who represents maybe 1% of the declining numbers to stop fishing is a fools play, and it will not change the course.
Fishing has nothing to do with recovery or nonrecovery of wild steelhead. In my opinion to even recover half of the wild fish that once swam in the Skagit river most of the dikes on the lower river will need to be removed and give at least some of the valley back to the river. This will never happen. Replant the land along side the river with native tress and vegetation from the mouth of the river all the way up. This will never happen. Do the same with her tributaries, major and minor. This will never happen. Remove the five concrete plugs in the system that stop the natural flow of the river and prevents needed sediments and other nutrients to flow with the river. This will never happen. Remove most of the development along the river including farms and other forms of polutions. This will never happen. Remove the hatchery. These are the types of sacrifices I am speaking of and this is an imcomplete list by far. Losing some fishing opportunities is minor.
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#88
Kerry -
I could only easily find the following

Release
Year % return
1983 2.09
1984 2.16
1985 2.38
1986 2.64
1987 2.04
1988 0.63
1989 3.13
1990 1.10
1991 0.86
1992 0.55
.
.
.
1999 0.92
2000 0.63
2001 0.05
2002 0.78
2003 0.30
2004 0.46
2005 0.24
2006 0.39

Tight lines
Curt
Thanks Curt. The low percentages that your research show should make the point I was after clear. What the hell happend in '89? By far the best year of any and still only a 3% return (not knowing what might consitute a banner year). I did some quick calculations and found that the average return for 18 years was 1.18%. Throwing out the high and low came up with 1.13%. This doesn't seem like a very good average to me.
 
#89
Fishing has nothing to do with recovery or nonrecovery of wild steelhead. In my opinion to even recover half of the wild fish that once swam in the Skagit river most of the dikes on the lower river will need to be removed and give at least some of the valley back to the river. This will never happen. Replant the land along side the river with native tress and vegetation from the mouth of the river all the way up. This will never happen. Do the same with her tributaries, major and minor. This will never happen. Remove the five concrete plugs in the system that stop the natural flow of the river and prevents needed sediments and other nutrients to flow with the river. This will never happen. Remove most of the development along the river including farms and other forms of polutions. This will never happen. Remove the hatchery. These are the types of sacrifices I am speaking of and this is an imcomplete list by far. Losing some fishing opportunities is minor.
Don't look at it as a monolithic structure Kerry, there are lots of things that could be done that are not that far out of reach. You could set back dikes below Mt.Vernon and restore saltmarash in the estuary, there are lots of good tribs in the upper river that could be rehabed and in the middle river as well. Steelhead are very adaptive, if they weren't they wouldn't have survived the last million years in this geograghy. Obviously we will not see historic numbers of old, but I believe they can return in good numbers. I just hate to see someone with as much knowledge of the river as you give up. I hope you don't

Chris
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#90
Don't look at it as a monolithic structure Kerry, there are lots of things that could be done that are not that far out of reach. You could set back dikes below Mt.Vernon and restore saltmarash in the estuary, there are lots of good tribs in the upper river that could be rehabed and in the middle river as well. Steelhead are very adaptive, if they weren't they wouldn't have survived the last million years in this geograghy. Obviously we will not see historic numbers of old, but I believe they can return in good numbers. I just hate to see someone with as much knowledge of the river as you give up. I hope you don't

Chris
The idea of a setting back the dikes is not new. It was studied a few years back and the money amounts it would take to do such a thing is very high. We will never put that much money into saving steelhead. They even pitched the idea as a viable flood control measure, which it is, and still made little progress. A huge undertaking would involve many land owners and municipalities. Right out of the idea box it was challenged by many of the towns and a lot of affected land owners. Personally I think it is one of the best ideas out there but it will never happen.