Thompson River Action Alert

The Native Fish Society is partnering with the Steelhead Society of British Columbia to raise awareness of a plan to loosen the rules in place surrounding the salmon net fisheries, which currently limit the bycatch of Thompson steelhead.

Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) is suggesting a change to current regulations that protect steelhead in their new Integrated Fisheries Management Plan (IFMP) for 2014-2015.

Read more and sign the NFS petition here.

Take Action for Little Fish

Maybe you have seen this going around about the Little Fish our big fish eat?  Pew has been pushing this around for a while, and you know what, they are spot on.  As fishermen, sport and commercial, we fight over allocation, we fight over hatchery releases, and we all are overwhelmed with the issues of habitat.  All this has to do with what is going down on land.  There is something we can do that is pretty simple and gets us ahead of the curve on a major issue in our oceans.  The increase harvest of Forage fish.

Forage fish are the herring, anchovies, sardines, dace, smelt, squid etc. that eat phytoplankton turning it into protein for the big stuff, like seals, salmon, steelhead and birds.  This increase in harvest in a volatile ocean, see the sardine issue, turns commercial fishermen to seek out new species to target for harvest often to feed fish farms.  Of all these little fish, only anchovies, market squid, Pacific herring, and sardines are regulated on the West Coast in the L48.  What Pew is suggesting, along with Trout Unlimited, Association of Northwest Steelheaders, Wild Steelhead Coalition and a slew of others, is they actually manage for the majority of species on an eco-system level.  This is the proposal from the Pacific Fisheries Management Council that fish folks are supporting.

These fish feed Steelhead and salmon, making them strong so they can swim to places as near to the ocean as Siletz, Oregon or as far as Salmon, Idaho, healthy fish are strong spawners and fight hard as well.  The other thing these little fish do is create massive bait balls at the mouths of some of our biggest rivers, like the Columbia. This provides incredible cover for outgoing smolt who run a gauntlet of birds, seals, and predator fish as they enter the ocean.

So take a minute and Take Action – Tell the Pacific Fisheries Management Council the time is now to protect unmanaged Forage Fish – Deadline for Comments is March 30th.

Head over to http://www.tu.org/take-action and find the link titled “West Coast TU Members: Urge Fishery Managers to Protect Our Forage Fish”

What’s up with the steelhead stalkers?

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The crew of the research vessel Chasina gets ready to drop an acoustic telemetry receiver 300 feet down into Puget Sound. The device will record tagged steelhead as they swim out of their spawning rivers. Credit: Ashley Ahearn

OPB radio recently provided a look into the research conducted by Megan Moore (NWFSC – NOAA) and colleagues on an early marine survival project. If you didn’t catch the program, it describes the sources and locations of steelhead smolt mortality upon leaving their natal river. The researchers are tagging wild and hatchery smolts, then tracking their movements (and survival) through Hood Canal in Washington to study where mortality is occurring and if differences between hatchery and wild fish are present.

Continue Reading “What’s up with the steelhead stalkers?”

Winter Skwala skating success

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Late winter brings out Skwala stones that present some of the earliest season dry fly fishing. When Skwala flies skate, they get crushed.

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Work your way downstream, drifting the dry fly as normal. At the end of the drift, let the line come tight and let the fly skate across. When your fly is directly downstream, you’re not done yet. Strip the fly back, letting it wake as it goes. We get some big hits on these flies from hungry trout on the retrieve.

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Mushrooms clean dirty Willamette River water

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[LINK] to complete story from KVAL.com

The process used by volunteers with the Ocean Blue Project, an ecological restoration nonprofit, is to place mushroom spawn and a mixture of coffee grounds and straw in burlap bags that mushrooms can grow in, and then place the bags so that water entering storm drains will filter through them.

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality water sampling from 2008 to 2012 showed the presence of pesticides, flame retardants, metals, and chemical ingredients from consumer products in the river. The Oregon Health Authority also has an active mercury advisory warning that children should not eat more than one serving of resident species of fish from the main fork of the Willamette River a month, and that adults should not eat more than four servings. Complete Article [HERE].

Mushrooms are freaking sweet.

Thank you, Senator Mark Begich.

 

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Complete Article Here: [Link]

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich says he’s concluded the proposed Pebble mine cannot be developed without harming the Bristol Bay region’s world-famous red salmon runs.

“Wrong mine, wrong place, too big,” Begich said in an interview. “Too many potential long-term impacts to a fishery that is pretty critical to that area but also to Alaska, to world markets.”