Steelhead: Will hatchery hook up with a Native? I'd lik...

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Richard Torres, Jul 14, 2003.

  1. Richard Torres

    Richard Torres Active Member

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    Ladies and Gentlemen.
    I'm writing an essay this week on this topic. After years of reading about the subject and having conversations with my fishing friends, i've come to a conclusion to the matter. With the information I have dug up on the internet ("Managing Wild and Hatchery Fish in Oregon" , "Hatchery Versus Wild Populations of Steelhead Trout in the Carp River, MI" and "Do hatchery Salmon help or harm the wild ones?" http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/46319_salmon12.shtml) and talking to people recently, I have decided to write why I think that clubbing hatchery steelhead is not the solution to saving thier wild brothers and sisters. Now I want your opinion to this matter.... Anything counts and you won't be able to sway my thoughts on this. I just want to know how my flyfishing family feels about this subject, :professor WILL HATCHERY STEELHEAD MATE WITH A NATIVE?:professor
    Tight Lines!
     
  2. D3Smartie

    D3Smartie Active Member

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  3. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

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    Fish will mate with just about anything they can. That's how we end up with things like cut-bows, rainbow/golden hybrids, some splake, some tiger trout (I say some because most of the latter two species are raised in hatcheries, but occasionally occur in nature as well). If they can cross species lines, they can certainly cross the hatchery/native line too. Another tough call is how do you tell the difference between a wild fish borne of hatchery parents vs. a wild native fish? If you're clubbing a hatchery fish because it doesn't have an adipose fin and then admiring your next "wild" fish and releasing it, who's to say that hatchery fish wasn't a parent or cousin of the wild fish? Just food for thought...
     
  4. Richard Torres

    Richard Torres Active Member

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    Thanks for replying. Thats the general consensus with most folks that i've talked to. I did find out from a guide that told me that he's seen natives reject the hatchery types from spawing with them but I was a little skeptical.
     
  5. jackchinook

    jackchinook Member

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    It gets more complex that that too. It goes beyond whether the wild hen will 'accept' the hatchery buck (or vice versa) though that's a big issue in itself. There's a lot of work currently being done looking at the extent of residualism in (mostly) male steelhead/rainbow smolts planted in streams. These fish are presumed to go out to sea. However, many of them stay in the stream and become 'rainbows'. When spawning time comes, snorkel surveys have shown that active redds may have up to 4 or 5 of these little precocious males hanging around waiting for the magical moment when the female drops the goods. The little guys make a run for it and shoot their stuff into the mix. DNA-based pedigree work has shown that they're quite successful at fertilizing eggs too. Not to mention the fact that these resident fish devour large numbers of salmon/trout fry! I'm currently helping out on a couple of projects that look at these sorts of things to try and minimize the impacts of hatchery supplementation programs on wild stocks....tough stuff but very cool and relevant to the overall ecology of our wonderful fish.
     
  6. Roper

    Roper Idiot Savant

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    Wouldn't you???

    If you were some clipped fin freak and a nate swam buy wiggling her fin...???

    Roper,

    Good things come to those who wade...
     
  7. Backyard

    Backyard SANCHO!

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    Wouldn't you???

    you took the words right out of my mouth... some of those hens are pretty hot, but i can't understand a word they're saying. ummm errr....
     
  8. troutman101

    troutman101 Member

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    Wouldn't you???

    That is like asking, will a city folk hook up with a hillbilly? Oh yeah! You can take the Native from the river and you CAN take the river from the Native.

    Most Columbia River stocks are non-native now. When the Bonneville was built, they had to truck all of the fish at the dam waiting to spawn somewhere. Since no one knew which fish came from where, they just put them wherever thay thought they needed to go. It screwed up the whole Columbia river system. They then found out that native stocks wouldn't be able to return back to the ocean because of the turbines. Even if the Steelhead were to make it through the turbines, the river would kill them due to oxygen supersaturation.

    After the stocks diminished, the hatchery program was adompted in the mid 50's to replenish the Steelhead and Salmon stocks. Naturally, some hatchery fish reverted back to spawning in the reaches above the hatcheries. This is where we are now. There probably aren't any true native stocks left but there are still wild steelhead spawning above the hatcheries.

    A friend is doing research right now on mapping the genode of steelhead. When the genode is mapped and each gene is identified, as far as I understand they will know what the true genetic differences are between steelhead and rainbow trout. They will also be able to identify each specific strain and their family tree. (Where the native fish came from grenerations before)

    Please correct me if I am wrong with any information given here.

    Thanks.
     
  9. Steelheadjunky

    Steelheadjunky Member

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    i have not read any reports that suggest the Hatchery fish won't spawn with Native fish. I have documents at home and will try to look them up this evening. So the answer is a definate yes they will spawn with each other.

    JJ
     
  10. chadk

    chadk Be the guide...

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    The only thing I can think of from stopping male hatchery steelies from spawning with the female native is the bad-a$$ 25lb native buck who kicks their anal vents for even looking at 'his' hen. Unfortunately if said buck is poached or netted and taken out of the equation - the female would probably give in eventually.
     
  11. Kaari White

    Kaari White Active Member

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    So many good native hens give in... It shows the gradual degredation of society.. I mean rivers.

    Seamen plus seapeople equals seacity. :p
     
  12. troutman101

    troutman101 Member

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    Please be sure to post the report when you are done. I am sure a few of us would be interested in reading it. Thanks.
     
  13. ray helaers

    ray helaers Active Member

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    Hatchery steelhead that mate in the wild have a reproductive success rate of 1/2 to 2/3 that of native fish. Hatchery steelhead that mate in the wild with native fish have a reproductive success rate generally intermediate between H/H crosses and W/W crosses. Where it's been measured, hatchery steelhead on natural spawning grounds comprise as much as 30% to 50% of a total run.

    That means two things. First, hatchery steelhead are mating with wild steelhead, no doubt whatsoever. Second, when they do, the wild fish will produce fewer and less fit young than if it had mated with another wild fish.

    I know you said you would not change your thesis, no matter what you learned (always a good way to start an essay), but you might want to reconsider that. I think you need to do some more reading. Check out Mark Chilcote (ODFW), Mart Gross (University of Toronto), or Reg Rreisenbechler (USGS), among others. Also look at the report recently published by the NW Power Planning Council's Independent Scientific Advisory Panel, REVIEW OF SALMON AND STEELHEAD SUPPLEMNTATION. (see http://www.nwcouncil.org/library/isab/Default.htm)

    Methinks you may be worried that clubbing surplus hatchery fish will be bad for your fishing, and your looking for a "scientific" justification why opposing it would be "good" for the wild fish. Sorry, you won't be able to find it.
     
  14. chadk

    chadk Be the guide...

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    Ray - any numbers estimates on the success rate for 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation Hatchery fish who spawn in the wild? (Techincally they are now 'wild' fish) I guess it would make sense that over time, they get better at it as the weak genes of their hatchery 'grand parents' are filtered out...
     
  15. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, not up on the science aspect of this. But have seen many fish spawn on the Nooch (nice thing about having property on it). Have watched a few pairs in lower water, but good gravel making redds. Have seen big hatchery bucks (no adi's and dorsal a bit deformed) spawning with native hens (all fins, and dorsal fully formed). Can't tell you if they reproduced, but knew they were "making babies". ;) It's a cool thing to watch though. I loved to sit for hours near the redd areas and just watch them work. Pretty cool process. Wouldn't even fish, just watch (would only fish below that where they are less likely to spawn).

    Now, onto breeding rates, etc. Have no idea. Have seen conflicting reports. Having done studies while I was in college (alot of mine were astro physics theries and some applied physics theries) and know that it's funny how many variables you can have. My professor even said, which I agree, when it comes to studies the results gained are usually what best suites the scientists applying the study. I've found that to be true on alot of studies shown, but not all. If one group has a study, it usually benefits them, but a group opposing them will have a contradicting study to debunk theirs. You'd think that if the studies were the same, they'd get same results?? But too many variables to get an accurate overall result for all situations. So, I take "scientific studies" for just that, studies. Not realities. If we got ALL these scientists together who do these different resulting studies of same circumstance and make them do one BIG study. Now that I would check out. Would be funny to see them fight over the variables and effects for the studies. :7