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200705100 - Assessment of Interactions between Hatchery and Wild Summer Steelhead in the John Day River Subbasin

Sponsor: Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon

Budgets: FY07: $265,615 | FY08: $219,285 | FY09: $223,802

Short description: The goal of this project is to collect data that will address the question of whether interactions between hatchery stray summer-steelhead have the potential to impact recovery of the wild population in the John Day River subbasin.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Expense

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


ISRP final recommendation: Not fundable


The sponsor’s response does not provide convincing evidence that the radio-tagging approach will yield information important to addressing and solving a hatchery-wild interaction problem, if it exists. There are certainly enough hatchery-reared fish in the basin for the potential problem to exist. However, the design does not effectively get at the problem. The radio-telemetry approach works on such questions as fish passage, movements, etc. However, the telemetry approach with its small sample size does not appear to be the approach to answer the larger question of the degree of hatchery-wild interactions. It is an important question addressed by what appears to be the wrong (or an inadequate) technique. For this reason, the proposal is not fundable. There may be some better ways to address the issue of hatchery-wild interactions: perhaps through genetic pedigree analysis. An approach might be to put in picket weirs in the fall in some tributaries and conduct a parentage analysis by genotyping adults of known pedigree (hatchery vs. wild) and the ensuing juvenile production.

State/province recommendation: Not fundable due to budget constraints

Review group: OSPIT - Plateau

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

Comment: Budgetary restrictions.

State/province recommendation: MS: Recommended Action

Review group: MSRT

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

Comment: This project should be tied into the pilot project for intensively monitored watersheds (project number 200301700 - John Day subbasin portion), if funded. The MSRT does not believe that this is the highest priority location for this type of work to occur to provide a basin-wide benefit. A member of the MSRT would like the ISRP to review the sampling methodology (this project may not be able to answer the question it is addressing).