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200706900 - Determine status of migratory bull trout in the South Fork Payette River

Sponsor: Idaho Department of Fish & Game

Budgets: FY07: $137,197 | FY08: $108,061 | FY09: $107,955

Short description: The project is designed to evaluate population status migratory populations of bull trout in the South Fork Payette River.

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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 proposal identifies the problem of lack of information concerning bull trout distribution in the subbasin. The need to collect data to identify sites for monitoring bull trout population trends and evaluating the contribution of core areas to bull trout recovery is defined. The summary does not identify any other related projects but the narrative connects this proposed work to cooperative efforts by the Bureau of Reclamation, Idaho Department of Fish and Game and the Boise National Forest to identify the status of migratory bull trout in other core areas within the Southwest Idaho Recovery Unit. This project is designed to inform additional investigations to help identify sites that could be used to determine population trends for bull trout in the future. The only biological objective defined is to determine abundance and habitat use of migratory bull trout in the South Fork Payette River. This objective is tied to the subbasin plan. Specific timelines should be provided in a response. The management value to be derived from the information obtained in this project should be clearly identified. It is also not clear that the sponsors have considered work done elsewhere on bull trout ecology and how that work differs from what is proposed here. The big question is, how will this project advance our knowledge of migratory bull trout and facilitate their management? The methods described in the work elements should be expanded to address the adequacy of installing weirs on three streams rather than less or more. Also, justification of the target of tagging 40 adult bull trout is necessary. Is this number reasonable to establish reasonable population estimates using capture recapture methods? One of the objectives is related to habitat, but no methods are described for selecting sampling sites, determining sample sizes, or collecting data. No statistical procedure is described for analysis of these data or extrapolation beyond sample sites. Some discussion of how the results will be monitored and evaluated is necessary. How much confidence can be placed in abundance and distribution estimates based on the sampling proposed? More details concerning facilities, equipment, and personnel are necessary. It is unclear what the time commitment of the supervisory personnel will be. The exact duties and qualification of the three fishery technicians are also not specified. Will they all have similar qualifications and duties? Will project personnel have the quantitative skills to complete the data analysis? Purchase of a trailer for only eight months use in a short study should be better justified. Plans for information transfer include storage of data in StreamNet, annual reports, and reporting of incidental takes to USFWS. Will there be results worthy of broader reporting in regional scientific or technical outlets?

State/province recommendation:

Review group:

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