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199502800 - Piscivorous Avian Resource Utilization of Moses Lake and the Relationship to Other Systems

Sponsor: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)

Budgets: FY07: $298,000 | FY08: $298,000 | FY09: $298,000

Short description: Recent findings lead us to believe predatory birds may be impacting the resident fishery of lakes within the Columbia Basin including Moses Lake and potentially anadromous fishes within the Mainstem Columbia.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Expense

Recommended budgets: FY07: $0 | FY08: $0 | FY09: $0

Comment:

ISRP final recommendation: Not fundable

Comment:

In the response, the project sponsor has not sufficiently altered the proposal or addressed the core concerns in the ISRP's assessment with sufficient detail to warrant a re-evaluation or change in recommendation. This is still an essentially new research project with a different focus than the previous fishery studies at Moses Lake. The proposed project will look at the effects of avian predation on Moses Lake and how these predators may travel and utilize the resources of the mainstem Columbia River. Although quantifying bird predation on salmonids is suggested in the Lower Columbia River Subbasin plan, it is neither part of the history of this project nor a part of the Crab Creek Subbasin plan. Existing data and activities already taking place by WDFW indicate that avian predators are known to be a problem in Moses Lake. It is not clear that determining the relative importance of juvenile salmon and other fishes in the diets of the avian predators utilizing Moses Lake is necessary prior to implementation of avian predator control activities. The ISRP's preliminary comments from June 1, 2006: This is, in reality, a new project. The proposal uses an ongoing project number but is essentially new. The title is new, and the work proposed was never mentioned in the original scope of work. This proposal is inadequate in several respects and does provide confidence that this would be a successful project. There is an inadequate match to subbasin objectives. The literature review is fairly restricted and does not make a convincing case for avian control. Numerous relevant studies were not referenced: for example, Antolos, M., Roby, D. D., Lyons, D. E.; Collis, K.,Evans, A.F. Hawbecker, M., and B.A.Ryan.2005 Caspian tern predation on juvenile salmonids in the mid-Columbia River Transactions of the American Fisheries Society. 134:466-480. The presence of mergansers and cormorants is indicative that forage fish are available and being consumed. A useful estimate of consumption would be generated quickly based upon a few metrics from the literature. The important issues involve the determination of (1) are "too many" fish being consumed, and (2) if so, what could be done that is effective and acceptable to the community. The proposal does not satisfactorily describe possible courses of action needed to deal with either of these issues.

Response loop edit

See the sponsor's revised proposal from the response loop. You'll be taken to CBFWA's proposal system in Section 10 where most sponsors uploaded revised narratives or other responses to the ISRP comments.

State/province recommendation: Washington

Review group: Washington list

Recommended budgets: FY07: (n/a) | FY08: (n/a) | FY09: (n/a)

Comment: See Washington guidance