Type of Presentation

Oral

Session Title

General species and food webs

Description

Puget Sound steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss), including those in Hood Canal, are currently listed as “threatened” under the federal Endangered Species Act. The Hood Canal Steelhead Project (HCSP), a sixteen year (2007-2022) scientific research and recovery project, formed as a collaborative effort between lead NOAA Fisheries, state, tribal, and other federal agencies, and non-profit salmon restoration groups in the Hood Canal watershed. The conservation hatchery program was designed to evaluate the utilization of artificial propagation to increase a wild population’s abundance and productivity over the long term while minimizing genetic, ecological and demographic risks. A before-after control-impact experiment examines the effect of indigenous broodstock supplementation on productivity, life-history, and genetic characteristics of natural steelhead populations in Hood Canal before, during, and after supplementation. The experiment contains three supplemented streams, three non-supplemented streams and one post-supplemented stream. Data collected prior to the influence of any hatchery-origin fish suggest natural populations within Hood Canal differ in parr- and smolt-size at age, spawn timing, life history diversity, early marine survival and migration patterns. The HCSP collected embryos from naturally spawned redds for the supplemented streams, reared until smoltification (age-2), or adulthood (age-4 or -5) and then released back into their natal stream. The HCSP has resulted in modest increases in redds in the supplemented streams compared to the presupplementation period, while the nonsupplemented streams show a decrease over the same period. In one stream where supplementation was started two generations before the others, post-supplemention redd abundance is significantly greater than before supplementation was initiated. The HCSP annually samples parr and smolts to determine the impacts of supplementation on genetic and life history diversity.

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Hood Canal Steelhead Project: A conservation hatchery program

2016SSEC

Puget Sound steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss), including those in Hood Canal, are currently listed as “threatened” under the federal Endangered Species Act. The Hood Canal Steelhead Project (HCSP), a sixteen year (2007-2022) scientific research and recovery project, formed as a collaborative effort between lead NOAA Fisheries, state, tribal, and other federal agencies, and non-profit salmon restoration groups in the Hood Canal watershed. The conservation hatchery program was designed to evaluate the utilization of artificial propagation to increase a wild population’s abundance and productivity over the long term while minimizing genetic, ecological and demographic risks. A before-after control-impact experiment examines the effect of indigenous broodstock supplementation on productivity, life-history, and genetic characteristics of natural steelhead populations in Hood Canal before, during, and after supplementation. The experiment contains three supplemented streams, three non-supplemented streams and one post-supplemented stream. Data collected prior to the influence of any hatchery-origin fish suggest natural populations within Hood Canal differ in parr- and smolt-size at age, spawn timing, life history diversity, early marine survival and migration patterns. The HCSP collected embryos from naturally spawned redds for the supplemented streams, reared until smoltification (age-2), or adulthood (age-4 or -5) and then released back into their natal stream. The HCSP has resulted in modest increases in redds in the supplemented streams compared to the presupplementation period, while the nonsupplemented streams show a decrease over the same period. In one stream where supplementation was started two generations before the others, post-supplemention redd abundance is significantly greater than before supplementation was initiated. The HCSP annually samples parr and smolts to determine the impacts of supplementation on genetic and life history diversity.