Reviews, narrative and other documents for proposal

201003600: Expansion of Washington’s Tag Recovery Program in the Lower Columbia Region to Improve Fisheries and Viable Salmonid Population Monitoring

(View full proposal and assessments at

ISRP final recommendation: Meets Scientific criteria? Yes (Qualified)

The project proponents provided a response to ISRP’s requests in the form of a revised proposal narrative. Changes to the original narrative were highlighted in blue font, which assisted the ISRP in completing our review in a timely manner. The ISRP found the revisions adequate in responding to our requests, including: (1) addition of links to many references and new references to support technical justification, (2) provision of new details on methods, sample sizes, and metrics, and (3) a discussion of how and why the NOAA regional guidance on the types, accuracy, and precision of VSP monitoring (Crawford and Rumsey 2009) will be used by WDFW. With respect to these NOAA guidelines, the proponents provided a reasonable caveat "Although the NOAA standards have not been fully evaluated, WDFW has proposed to try to meet the NOAA standards to ensure that ESA listing and especially delisting decisions will not be compromised by not meeting the NOAA data quality standards. If the region can provide consensus for another standard, WDFW will evaluate this standard." Overall, the proponents have done a good job of addressing the ISRP’s concerns regarding adequacy of sample size as it relates to the CV 15% criterion (Crawford and Rumsey 2009). However, the ISRP encourages WDFW and other involved parties in the region to investigate further the various recommendations for sample sizes and to develop useful information that would aid investigators in selecting sample size requirements and understanding the consequences of that selection. Finally, the ISRP appreciates that the Pacific Salmon Commission (PSC) is contributing to WDFW’s proposed expansion of Washington’s tag recovery program in the lower Columbia region, and that the proposed work will address some of the limitations of the current CWT program, as highlighted by the PSC (2008) and recommended by the ISRP/ISAB (2009). References (ISRP/ISAB) Independent Scientific Review Panel/Independent Scientific Advisory Board. 2009. Tagging Report: A comprehensive review of Columbia River Basin fish tagging technologies and programs. ISRP/ISAB 2009-1, Northwest Power and Conservation Council, Portland. 110 pp. ( (PSC) Pacific Salmon Commission Coded Wire Tag Workgroup. 2008. An action plan in response to Coded Wire Tag (CWT) Expert Panel Recommendations. Pacific Salmon Comm. Tech. Rep. No. 25: 170 p. (

from Apr 2010 ISRP 2010-10 report

Narrative and other documents

201003600_Revised_Narrative.doc (narrative)
TagRecoveryProjectnarrativeFinal.doc (narrative)

ISRP preliminary recommendation: Meets scientific criteria? Yes (Qualified)

This project has the potential to benefit Columbia River Basin fish and wildlife by filling important gaps in recovery of passive integrated transponder (PIT) and coded-wire tagged (CWT) for salmonids in the Lower Columbia Region (LCR). However, the proposal narrative often referenced unpublished reports for details of viable salmonid population (VSP) monitoring methods and software to be used for different estimates. The ISRP requests a response in the form of a revised narrative to provide augmented details on methodologies outlined below. An adequate response should provide the following information: The metric numbers provided for tagging, RME designs, and analysis and interpretation of data need to be augmented with a description of the metrics. Similarly, the metric numbers provided for tagging, random sampling of CWT and PIT tags, and analysis and interpretation of data need to be augmented with a description of the metrics. The first proposed test of the tag detection rates appears problematic due to small sample size. In the second test plans to conduct the test at a hatchery or commercial sampling site have not been confirmed. Evidence of confirmation is necessary and details showing that the number of tags will be adequate should be provided. Details of how this test will be extended to examine differences between individuals/detectors should be provided. Details for the sampling design to sample CWT and PIT tags from Columbia River sport and commercial fisheries should be provided. The reference to a CV of 15% (Crawford and Rumsey, 2009) has not been established as a reasonable data standard. Crawford and Rumsey (2009) reference Carlile et al. (2008), which makes recommendations for coefficients of variation for estimates of total spawning escapement. The statistical and biological basis for the recommendation in Carlile et al. (2008) has not been reviewed. The justification that the standard represents a realistic goal for planning because it corresponds to an acceptable risk (one year or one stock in six) of failing to label a stock of concern when warranted appears to be arbitrary. The observation that the standard has proven to be attainable for many escapement estimation studies does not mean that this is the appropriate data standard. Further justification for sample size targets is required. 1. Technical Justification, Program Significance and Consistency, and Project Relationships The technical justification was straightforward and adequate for expanding the tag recovery program by adding PIT tagging. The proposed project will address several deficiencies (that are clearly stated) in the current CWT program. In particular, the project will fill significant fall Chinook and coho salmon monitoring gaps in the Lower Columbia River during the Columbia River Tributary Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation (RME) process. The proponents provided very good detail on how this project will respond to the Lower Columbia River Subbasin plans (LCFRB 2004) and generally the BiOp, PSC recommendations, and other Fish and Wildlife Program elements. The proponents listed many projects (CWT and PIT) as related to and sharing data with this one. Also, this project coordinates with and shares data with the Pacific Northwest Aquatic Monitoring Project’s (PNAMP) Integrated Status and Trend Monitoring (ISTM) project (#200400200) by using the same spawning distribution models for CWT recoveries and escapement. 2. Project History and Results This is a new project that builds on three previous BPA-funded CWT recovery projects (# 198201301, #2007236800, and #2007355000). A brief history of the current CWT program (# 198201301) was provided. 3. Objectives, Work Elements, and Methods Objective 1. "Escapement Sampling for CWTs" is not a fully stated, measurable objective and not until paragraph two following this statement do we find the full objective 1, which is "In this CWT and VSP monitoring effort, we intend to recover CWTs on spawning ground surveys to estimate exploitation rates for hatchery Chinook and coho salmon and concurrently gather data for VSP metrics (productivity, abundance, diversity, and spatial structure) using methods and sampling designs to meet the NOAA monitoring guidance (Crawford and Rumsey 2009)." The proponents provided useful tables summarizing assumptions needed to calculate unbiased population estimates. The methods for this objective are described in good detail for the most part, but often we are referred to reports for details of VSP monitoring methods and software to be used for different estimates. Links to some/many of those would be useful for reviewers. The proponents state that this project will provide "better managing and maintaining of existing databases" (WDFW's CWT, age, scales and biological data, and spawning ground survey databases in Olympia), but there is not a clear description of what this entails. Objective 1 includes marking and tagging of salmon for mark-recapture studies, but no details are provided on tagging methods, numbers and species of fish tagged, or possible negative effects of tagging on fish. The metric numbers provided for tagging, RME designs, and analysis and interpretation of data need to be augmented with a description of the metrics. Objective 2. "Fisheries Sampling for PIT Tags" should expand to "Fisheries Will be Sampled and Reported for PIT Tags as well as CWTs". This effort will be shared with ODFW and both agencies will upgrade to new detectors and data loggers. Methods for this objective are also well detailed and appear to be adequate for both sport and commercial Columbia mainstem fisheries. Carcasses will be PIT tagged to assess PIT tag detection rates, but a concise summary of experimental design and methods was not provided. The proponents state that CWT and PIT tags will be randomly sampled from Columbia River sport and commercial fisheries, but no sampling design is provided. The metric numbers provided for tagging, random sampling of CWT and PIT tags, and analysis and interpretation of data need to be augmented with a description of the metrics.

from Feb 2010 ISRP 2010-7 report