Hatchery brats: To bonk, or not to bonk?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Mingo, Nov 27, 2005.

  1. doublespey

    doublespey Steelhead-a-holic

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    Further proof why this list needs an active moderator. Anybody remember talking about issues, not about people?? How 'bout treating others (and their opinions) with respect? :beathead:

    Thanks Smalma - for putting up with the BS and still sharing your experiences and insights with us. I won't even attempt begin to list all that I've learned from your posts. :thumb:

    Reset to Lurk Mode,

    DS
     
  2. andrew

    andrew Active Member

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    I am not a "science guy"...DNA, genetics, are not on the top of my knowledge list, however, it would seem that hatchery fish serve a very important role in our "present" river conditions.

    Besides humon consuption there are seals, whales, adult steelhead and salmon, preditory birds which were established to keep nature in "check". If our current steelhead or salmon stocks (native) are low then it is my opinion or educated guess that hatchery fish serve as a "filler" for the above mentioned. I don't agree that the 'main' intention of hatchery programs were to subsidize humon consuption, therefore, I've taken the stance of realeasing all steelhead.

    The gist of my stance on hatchery fish...a steelhead is a steelhead...if planting will ensure that my kids, as well as others, have a chace to catch something then I'm for it. Granted I hope that if fish populations rise the need for hatchery fish depletes, and wise fishery practices are implemented in order to keep history from repeating itself.

    I've never heard a fisherman say while battling a fish without the knowledge of what it "is" say damn I caught something!
     
  3. wboles3

    wboles3 Member

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    This may be a dumb question, but, "Do steelhead usually return to the same river from which they were spawned?"
     
  4. TomB

    TomB Active Member

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  5. Zen Piscator

    Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

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    Tom,
    I think maybe no for some of the fish in the tucannon/walla walla/touchet that have steelhead runs around me. At least that is what I have heard, because genetics get mixed about. Did hatcheries not mix around fish from different rivers, like take john day and skamania steelies and try to get them to return to other tributaries? Are any of these old genes left in the hatchery fish. I hear of strays as in clearwater fish, but I think those fish are just heading out of the columbia or snake to get some cool, oxygenated water and rest before they head upstream. I spose it would be difficult to tell what is and isnt a stray, except the walla walla river doesnt get 20lb steelhead that spawn in it, but every few months sombody catches one down near the mouth, suggesting its a cleawater or salmon river fish.

    I digress, but back on topic, if there are mixed hatchery genes, which might only get worse with stray fish, would they not stand a very high chance of effecting wild fish. I think this is made much worse by the fact that they don't clip all hatchery fish in the systems mentioned above, or many other.

    Peace,
    Andy
     
  6. wboles3

    wboles3 Member

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    How do you tell the difference between a wild steelhead and the offspring of hatchery steelhead spawned in the river?
     
  7. jackchinook

    jackchinook Member

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    wboles,
    that's a great ?. DNA analysis is the only way I'm aware of...and it's a pretty involved process that requires having a 'baseline' DNA sample from the original stock in the river (i.e. before it was 'contaminated' by the hatchery stock).

    Anyone know any other methods?
     
  8. wboles3

    wboles3 Member

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    My next question would be " What was the origin of the original stock at the beginning of the hatchery program? Where they from wild stock?
     
  9. jackchinook

    jackchinook Member

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    depends on where you're talking about. Obviously, the first hatchery out there had to be based on wild broodstock. But some hatcheries use hatchery stock from elsewhere, some use only wild broodstock, many use a mixture of wild and hatchery. There are many types of operations out there.
     
  10. Porter

    Porter Active Member

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    Darwinism...? I'm not native but a mix of many things...and lived in a pen when young...wboles3 and jackchinook good simple q's w/o all the biological jargon. I was trying to make or ask similiar point in my first thread....you did better.
     
  11. wboles3

    wboles3 Member

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    I guess all original hatchery broodstock must have come from wild steelhead at one point in time. So, aren't they all steelhead? Its just that one is called "Wild" where the other is called "Hatchery". How are the genes different between the two?

    I think I should probably visit my nearest hatchery and get my other numerous questions answered.
     
  12. Desmond Wiles

    Desmond Wiles Sir Castaline

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    I tell you what Mingo, when I can actually catch a stealhead, wild or not, I will let you know what my opinion is! :beathead:
     
  13. James Mello

    James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

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    Well, if Curt is in the fisheries business, more than likely he came from a fisheries background. Being a manager of something means you have to understand what you are doing, not just point and grunt. I personally don't know about Curts background, but based on that last post there wasn't anything contained within that seemed unreasonable. The entirety of the post basically stated that it is not a simple black and white issue. And frankley it's not. I may not have a wildlife degree, but my wife is a wildlife biologist and I've lived with her enough to know that balancing this whole mess we have is a *really* hard thing to do. In a lot of cases we have competing needs being served from the same resource, and more often than not, the almighty dollar is the winner.

    Sure thing ;) But based on this info you provided (which I snipped for brevity) why didn't you put it there in the first place? A lot of the points are relevant, and quite a few raise interesting statements that should be debated. I think this is one of those cases where presentation was a little splashy and chased away all of the fish!

    As for the whole problem of PS steelhead going to pot, I can basically say without a doubt it comes down to one word... POPULATION. Habitat sucks, people want to fish (and to catch and keep fish), and simply put we don't have enough natural resources in the area to deal with it. Simply making every river catch and release doesn't solve the issue when habitat doesn't exist. If we *REALLY* want to fix the problems here, we should sit at the borders with rifles and shoot anyone trying to get into our state... Oh, and don't forget the condom distribution to all middle school and older kids!

    -- Cheers
    -- James
     
  14. gordon

    gordon New Member

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    well if people want to catch and kill at an unsustainable rate then it is curt's job to suggest a closure or restriced fishery methods. You can't sit back with your finger in your but and say "nothin I can do". Habitat is an issue no doubt, but there were loads of people living here in the early 1990's and the steelhead were still here, the harvest continued, and so did the demise. blame everyone, just make sure you include those at WDFW.

    As for fishery managers, yes they know something, but in their world of simplified models they lack the plasticity to conserve

    Frankly I don't care if I scare people away. Like I said, this is only an internet board, nothing more.
     
  15. Willie Bodger

    Willie Bodger Still, nothing clever to say...

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    Actually, this one point, which I don't feel is a small one, is where I would say you are wrong. Yes, it is an internet board, but it is not 'just' an internet board. It is a developing community. Back in the day, before planes trains and automobiles (and computers), popuklated areas were more compact, less spread out. You saw your neighbors more, people hung out at places other than their computer and often didn't work as much as we do nowadays. Places like this are part of our desire to get back to that feeling of community, to share a common passion and to swap knowledge, stories, poke fun etc.. Now, I know that every community will have discord and that piece I really don't care to get into, but to say "It's only an internet board, what do I care" kind of misses the point.

    Willie