Posts tagged: fish
RIVERS — In Fiscal Year 2012, the Bonneville Power Administration reported $644.1 million in total costs for its federally mandated actions to mitigate the impacts Columbia River Basin hydroelectric development has had on fish and wildlife.
The costs are listed an annual report released last week by the Northwest Power and Conservation Council to the governors of Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.
The Northwest Power passed by Congress in 1980 requires BPA, which markets power generated at federal dams in the region, to fund the NPCC programs undertaken by state and federal agencies and some tribes.
Bonneville estimates the grand total expended since 1978, when the costs began, through 2012, is about $13 billion, not including $2.27 billion in capital investments for fish hatcheries and fish passage facilities at dams.
Read on for a summary of the 2012 costs, compiled by the Columbia Basin Bulletin:
FISHING — Act now and get a free sticker with the image above for your vehicle, boat or tacklebox.
The “Fish Washington” logo is the new symbol of Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife statewide recreational fishing opportunities.
The logo is available free in a 6-by-4 inch oval sticker. Their available free while supplies last by filing out the online form on the agency's website.
FISHING — Spring-like conditions are advancing in leaps and bounds, as indicated by the experience of a friend who went fly fishing on Crab Creek in Lincoln County twice in the past 10 days.
On the first trip he hit a hatch, caught and released quite a few fish and encountered no ticks.
Buoyed by that experience, he returned to the creek on Monday.
“I caught four fish, and plucked off 25 ticks,” he said. “The tick season has arrived. I'll be fishing elsewhere.”
ENVIRONMENT — Working up to the high-stakes trial that began this week, British Petroleum has been spending a lot of time and money advertising that the oil spill from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster has been cleaned up and everything is cool. Yeah, sure.
Meanwhile, hundreds of coastal wetlands remain contaminated and every major storm stirs up more oil mats from the ocean bottom and spreads them out on Gulf beaches.
Wildlife and people took a terrible beating from this mess and it was relatively accessible compared with the oil development and potential disaster brewing in the Arctic Ocean.
This is serious business with profound potential impacts to life in the water and on the coastlines.
FISHING — KHQ-TV paid a visit to the Spokane Fish Hatchery this week to produce this segment on winter operations that are vital to the region's anglers.
The cameraman was a bit late for the peak December spawning action described in this story by North Central High School student volunteer.
Here's a story about the “egg sucking” that goes into removing the dead eggs from the trays, as hatchery manager Ace Trump mentions in the TV video.
WATER QUALITY — Should runoff from logging roads be considered pollution and subject to permitting requirements?
The question has been the basis of a long-standing court battle that continues this week despite a recent court decision in favor of the timber industry.
Certainly the matter is of interest to fishermen, who know that erosion from roads can have major impacts on fish spawning and holding habitat.
Trout Unlimited is concerned that the Food and Drug Administration’s ‘finding of no significant impact’ is a premature ‘green light’ for the eventual production of genetically engineered salmon for human consumption. First, we want to ensure that threats to wild salmon populations from genetically engineered salmon are understood and completely prevented, both for the protection of economically vital commercial salmon fishing industry and the growing recreational salmon fishing sector.Second, we want to ensure that a more detailed environmental impact review isn’t the more appropriate process for this issue rather than a simple FDA environmental assessment, which is far less thorough (and, frankly, is the FDA the correct agency to analyze environmental impact?).Third, prior to permit approval it must be clear that an effective regulatory framework exists so that impacts to wild fisheries and aquatic ecosystems are prevented, and future permit applications receive an appropriate level of scientific analysis and public scrutiny to understand and avoid environmental risk.Trout Unlimited will be reviewing the environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact to see whether an adequate analysis of potential threats has been completed by the agencies with expertise in aquatic ecosystems.
FISHING/HUNTING — Having trouble finding birds to shoot during the upland bird hunting season?
No worries. Put that bird dog to use retrieving a fish dinner. Video shows how easy it is.
WILDLIFE CRIMES — In a major crackdown on alleged illegal wildlife traffickers today, Washington Fish and Wildlife police served 14 search warrants on businesses — including Walla Walla County restaurants selling illegal elk meat.
A SWAT team was called in to arrest one West Side man officers say provided “two to three big game animals a week” at times to undercover officers.
See the report by Andy Walgamott of Northwest Sportsman.
Here's report by KING 5 TV.
PUBLIC LANDS — Shrinking budgets at national forests are putting the squeeze on native fisheries.
Cutbacks in maintaning mountain roads have left a backlog of work totalling more than $1 billion in the national forests of Washington and Oregon alone, the Forest Service officials report.
The result is erosion, clogged culverts, road blowouts, blocked fish passage, and spawning areas smothered in silt.
Northwest Public Radio has an excellent report on the situation.
SALMON FISHING — Up to six hatchery origin spring chinook salmon may be retained on the Wind River from the railroad bridge upstream starting Saturday, the Washington Fish and Wildlife has just announced.
Up to four of the fish can be adult chinook.
Similar limit increases were announced for Drano Lake. The rules will extend to June 30 unless revoked earlier.
Read on for details
SALMON FISHING – Fishing for spring chinook salmon will close on the last two sections of the Snake River at an hour past sunset Today (May 22).
By then, the catch of Snake River spring chinook salmon is expected to reach harvest guidelines based on the most recent estimate of the run size, according to fishery managers at the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
“The majority of the fish were taken in the lower Snake River, but the catch guidelines apply to the river as a whole,” said Cindy LeFleur, WDFW Columbia River policy coordinator. “For that reason, we had to close the upriver fisheries sooner than expected.”
The two sections of the river set to close Tuesday are:
The state line runs from the east levee of the Greenbelt boat launch in Clarkston northwest across the Snake River to the boundary marker on the Whitman County shore.
Two other areas of the Snake River below Ice Harbor Dam and Little Goose Dam closed for spring chinook fishing May 18.
“Unless there is a major change in the run forecast, this closure will likely mark the end of the season for spring chinook fishing on the Snake River,” LeFleur said.
FISHING — A friend, who loves fishing and the outdoors, was asked by the company what he wanted for a retirement gift, he thought long an hard about the choice for such a momentous occasion.
His decision: An acrylic painting by Spokane artist (and zoologist) Melissa Cole, who specializes in fish and other creatures from the water.
Check out Cole's online gallery.
Cole graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in Zoology. She has spent time working in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic in environmental education, as a dive guide in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands, and as a naturalist guide in Baja, Mexico. She has written more than 30 children's natural history books and travels with her husband, Brandon, a wildlife photographer specializing in marine life.
FISHERIES — Wild-caught Pacific salmon is more myth than reality on some Puget Sound restaurant menus, a study at the University of Washington Tacoma has found.
About 38 percent of samples from Tacoma-area restaurants showed a menu was promoting farm-raised Atlantic salmon as wild-caught Pacific salmon, or calling a coho a king, the Associated Press reports.
Grocery stores and fish markets got better scores, with only about 7 percent of store samples mislabeled.
“I’m shocked at the number of substitutions that we encountered,” said Erica Cline, an assistant professor in the university’s environmental program who was one of two biology instructors leading the study.
Cline said, but she hopes her study and others like it could lead to stronger enforcement of federal laws that prohibit false labeling of fish and other animals.
FISHING – The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is holding meetings this month to discuss proposed treatment projects at four Eastern Washington Lakes, including a project at Kings Lake in Pend Oreille County.
Using rotenone to remove existing fisheries and restocking with desired species would improve trout broodstock production and trout fishing, officials said.
At Kings Lake, which is not open to sport fishing, biologists would remove rainbow trout that are hybridizing with westslope cutthroat trout.
The treatment is needed to maintain the genetic integrity of Kings Lake cutthroat trout, which are the source of hatchery production for fish stocked throughout the eastern region, said Bill Baker, district fish biologist.
After treatment, Kings Lake would be re-stocked with cutthroat. As a broodstock source, the lake will remain closed to fishing, Baker said.
Other rehabilitation projects are proposed for Alta and Fish lakes and Schallow Pond In Okanogan County.
Public meetings in the Spokane region are:
- July 13 in Newport, at Create Art Center, 900 W. 4th St.
- July 14 in Spokane Valley, at the WDFW Eastern Region office, 2315 N. Discovery Place (in Mirabeau Point, between Evergreen and Pines streets)
HUNTING/FISHING — Editorials by leaders in the hunting and fishing community, findings from several new studies, and action by the U.S. military are prompting conservation groups to press Congress to re-evaluate proposed legislation that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from regulating lead in ammunition used for hunting.
The American Bird Conservancy compiled the following list of recent endorsements, editorials and research summaries to consider.
FISHERIES — Columbia and Snake river salmon are the focus of a free film documentary and book event tonight in Spokane:
Salmon: Running the Gauntlet. — featuring a personal appearance by the film's maker, Steven Norton of Boise — will show at an event starting at 7 p.m., at the Caterina Winery, 905 N. Washington St. The Nature series documentary just aired last weekend on PBS.
Also speaking at the event is Steven Hawley, author of Recovering a Lost River, which examines dam removal on the Klamath River.
The event is free but RSVPs appreciated. Contact Sam Mace, 747-2030 or email@example.com.
On Thursday, the two men will speak at the Kootenai Environmental Alliance monthly noon meeting at the Iron Horse in downtown Coeur d'Alene.
FISHERIES RESEARCH - A tiny transponder inserted in a random sample of hatchery and wild salmon and steelhead enables scientists and the public to track the fish migrations up and down the Columbia and Snake rivers.
The PIT (passive integrated transponder) tag is an electronic tag the size of a tiny piece of spaghetti, measuring 12 mm long by 2.1 mm in diameter.
Click here for details on how the tags are used for tracking fish as well as the website the public can tap to find out where the fish are in their migration.
Incidentally, juvenile spring chinook salmon collectively dubbed Sammie the Salmon are being followed on their 600-mile downstream migration by combining PIT tag technology with a Facebook page in an educational project launched by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The young salmon were tagged and released recently at the Winthrop National Fish Hatchery and are being tracked with images, video and updates as they head down the Methow and Columbia rivers to the ocean.
The first spring chinook from WNFH arrived at Rocky Reach Dam on April 21 at 8:30 p.m. The PIT tag showed that it had covered 100 river miles in 3.2 days! Since then, more than 600 PIT tagged chinook have reached that milestone.
Read on for more info about Sammie Salmon.
WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT – The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission will hear public comment on proposals for 2011 big-game hunting seasons when it meets Friday and Saturday at the Spokane Convention Center.
State officials didn't do sportsmen any favors by booking the meeting downtown at the Convention Center, where parking is expensive and problematic for people who want to drop in for a topic or two. The meeting would have been better suited to the Center Place meeting rooms at Mirabeau Park near the Region 1 Fish and Wildlife Department Office in Spokane Valley.
Meantime, a lingering proposal for a four-point minimum on whitetail bucks hunted in Units 117 and 121 in Stevens County will be open for discussion when deer and elk seasons are presented on Saturday.
Although meetings have been held on this issue in the past — and I covered it in several stories, including this column last August — this is the last opportunity for public comment before the commission votes on proposed amendments to the big-game rules April 8-9 in Olympia.
Click here for a complete commission meeting agenda.
Click here for the notes and reasoning behind the proposed hunting rule changes.