Sockeye salmon to return to Okanagan Lake for first time in over 50 years

Supacash

Wishin I was Fishin
Awesome! Now wish something would be done for the Baker Sockeye, the dismal 30k return they're referencing to return to Penticton is more than double the Baker return this year.
 

Varanzo

New Member
People on both sides of our border abuse Salmon for years. Everybody goes after this fish. Short and difficult life!
 

Supacash

Wishin I was Fishin
People on both sides of our border abuse Salmon for years. Everybody goes after this fish. Short and difficult life!
Agreed. Now I'm waiting for the announcement that the Colville tribe has decided they need to net the Okanogan river and take 51% of the fish.
 

Varanzo

New Member
You already making great pressure on BC Government to protect upper Skagit. Your Governor’s letter to our local politicians played big role and raised awareness. Still our politicians are trying hard to approve mining and clearcutting in Donut hole, Manning Park.

Whenever friend and I pass that section heading to fish Skagit our heart sink. It will devastate our fish and wildlife.
 

BDD

Active Member
For those that read the article, you will notice that it failed to mention that the ORRI habitat restoration projects including the four spawning platforms was funded by mid Columbia PUD mitigation dollars. It also didn't say that the monitoring and evaluation work (all the data collection of the life histories and sockeye/kokanee/mysis interactions) to convince fishery agencies to approve sockeye reintroduction to Skaha and now Okanagan lakes was provided mostly by mid Columbia mitigation dollars. The article didn't say that the sockeye hatchery was built in 2014 using mid Columbia mitigation dollars. The article did not say that the current and future hatchery operations and maintenance is funded through mid Columbia mitigation dollars. The article did not say the fish-water management model used to keep boats from going dry on Lake Okanagan, used to minimize redd desiccation during drought and redd scour during floods, and keep all the irrigators with water, and to keep the hypoxia conditions from occurring in Lake Osoyoos so that all the adult sockeye holding in the lake during elevated summer temperatures was funded through mid Columbia PUD mitigation dollars.

Other than those slight omissions, it was mostly correct. ONA have already put adult and juvenile sockeye in Lake Okanagan for several years now. Next year's return represents the strong 4-year cycle and there should be decent numbers of returning adults freely passing into Lake Okanagan for the first time since the 50s. That will be an awesome success story.
 
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JM

Member
I remember reading that there was purse seining in the Columbia at the mouth of the okanogan a couple of years ago. This was followed by a massive die off of the sockeye run due to elevated water temperatures. They attributed the large die off of white sturgeon below the okanogan to the over abundance of carcasses consumed with the elevated water temperature. its great to hear that the fish are populating the area above osoyoos.
 
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Salmo_g

Well-Known Member
Now wish something would be done for the Baker Sockeye,
Sorry for the thread drift, but something has been done for Baker sockeye. In 1985 the adult return was only 99 sockeye. Restoration efforts mainly through improved downstream juvenile passage have increased annual runsizes to a range of 20,000 to 50,000 adult sockeye. The carrying capacity of the Baker sub-basin appears to have been reached.
 

Supacash

Wishin I was Fishin
Sorry for the thread drift, but something has been done for Baker sockeye. In 1985 the adult return was only 99 sockeye. Restoration efforts mainly through improved downstream juvenile passage have increased annual runsizes to a range of 20,000 to 50,000 adult sockeye. The carrying capacity of the Baker sub-basin appears to have been reached.
Yeah, sorry for the thread drift too. I'm just bitter after a 13k return this year to Baker according to trap counts and reading that they consider a 30k return as poor for a fishery that is hundreds of miles from the ocean forced an auto response. I'm glad to see a fishery like this returning though.
 

Salmo_g

Well-Known Member
I'm just bitter after a 13k return this year to Baker according to trap counts
Trap count does not equal run size. There was a sport fishery and treaty Indian fishery in the river that was not included in the trap count. It's imperative to count all the fish when assessing a population's performance.
 

Supacash

Wishin I was Fishin
Trap count does not equal run size. There was a sport fishery and treaty Indian fishery in the river that was not included in the trap count. It's imperative to count all the fish when assessing a population's performance.
Agreed, trap count sucked this year though for sure.
 

Shad

Active Member
Trap count does not equal run size. There was a sport fishery and treaty Indian fishery in the river that was not included in the trap count. It's imperative to count all the fish when assessing a population's performance.
Yes! One must also consider the salmon the habitat is producing that never return to the river, by design, because they get caught in the ocean.

All our rivers produce immensely more harvestable fish than whatever number is allowed to return to spawn. Seems fisheries management is the ultimate habitat limitation to me.
 

Smalma

Active Member
Supacash-
Ann important aspect in discussing sockeye production from a given lake is the size (surface area) of the lakes in question. I believe that Okanagan Lake is more than an order of magnitude larger than the Baker/Shannon complex. In short 30,000 fish in Okanagan would be only a small part of the lake's potential and in Baker a fair representation of current potential. BTW historically I believe the historic estimates of the Baker sockeye were up to 20,000 fish.

Curt
 
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