Please consider attending this...


Eyes to the sky...
Nothing will change unless we stand up and voice our opinions... Sometimes it feels like pissing in the wind. No guarantee that things will change for the better, but doing nothing will guarantee that nothing improves.

I'll be there and will grab a bite after.

OLYMPIA – State fishery managers will hold a public meeting Jan. 9 in Centralia to discuss a proposal to end the release of hatchery steelhead in the North Fork Toutle/Green River watershed to support the recovery of wild fish.

The meeting is scheduled from 6-8 p.m. Washington Hall Room 103 at Centralia College, 701 W. Walnut St.

The North Fork Toutle/Green River watershed is one of three tributaries to the lower Columbia River recently proposed as “gene banks” for wild steelhead by advisory groups to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). The other two tributaries are the East Fork Lewis River and the Wind River.

The purpose of gene banks is to protect wild steelhead from the effects of hatchery stocks in strategic watersheds around the state, said Cindy Le Fleur, fish manager for WDFW’s southwest region.

“Research has shown that negative effects can range from interbreeding to competition for food and habitat,” Le Fleur said. “Creating gene banks to protect wild steelhead in some areas is required under the Statewide Steelhead Management Plan.”

Wild steelhead populations in the lower Columbia River have been listed as “threatened” under the federal Endangered Species Act since 1998.

Chris Brittin Johnson

Fly Flinging Fanatic
I plan on attending. I live near centralia and I attended centralia college. I heard on the local radio station a commercial disapproving of it. Saying it would hurt local business's that rely on the summer runs. Couldn't believe it. I'm sure there will be many uninformed fisherman there arguing to keep the hatcherys so they have something to snag.


I'm sure there will be many uninformed fisherman there arguing to keep the hatcherys so they have something to snag.
There are different ideas about fisheries management. The majority of people don't care if they catch wild or hatchery fish. Referring to those folks who fish over hatchery fish as snaggers isn't going to go over too well in a large audience.

The great divide is live and well.


Eyes to the sky...
Good that a few of us will be there. Better if a bunch are. This is a chance to speak directly to the decision makers. Let's pack the house.
From attending previous meetings such as these it is my opinion that the decision has already been made and the Dept. is just appeasing one user group. The State has made a commitment to try these Gene banks to meet the ESA listing. I am hopeful the Gene Banks work and one day we can fish on some brute wild fish. How long this will take or will it rebound, I am no scientist and don't know about the habitat in these places. Hopefully it does work.
I can't make it, but here's a strong point I think we need to make:

We're going to be argued against as bullies trying to take away fishing opportunities and are unwilling to compromise. I think it's important to point out that having just a couple rivers designated as gene banks IS the compromise. We currently put hatchery fish in to pretty much every steelhead river in the state. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. That is the real lack of compromise.

We can never, and should never, advocate for 100% hatchery removal. But to shoot for even a 50/50 type situation should be something everyone can live with.
I read that the pro-hatchery guys were pretty obnoxious at the meeting.
that is an understatement.... straight up rude and unwilling to have a rationale discussion. My quip above was actually stated by one hatchery advocate, even after WDFW showed the genetic testing that proves wild winter fish had traces of hatchery summer run in their genetics. He claimed they don't spawn together because they "ain't ready at the same time!" Even though the difference is just that they enter the system at different times. Shane Anderson made the excellent point that they even have resident rainbow in their DNA, but no one could hear him through the yelling....

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