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NOAA Fisheries 1/30/06

Northwest – Harvest and Hatcheries to be Reviewed as Part of Salmon Recovery Strategy

Jim Connaughton, Chairman of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, addressed the day-long "Future of Wild Pacific Salmon" conference at Oregon State University on January 25 as part of the Salmon 2100 Project http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/disclaimer.htm. Mr. Connaughton called for a comprehensive and collaborative approach to salmon recovery in the Pacific Northwest seeking to end outdated hatchery programs and stop harvest levels and practices that impede recovery of wild, endangered and threatened salmon.

Beginning this week, NOAA Fisheries Service will launch a collaborative review of how harvest and hatcheries – particularly federally funded hatcheries -- are affecting the recovery of ESA-listed salmon and steelhead. This review will be open, thorough and independent, using a highly-respected non-federal facilitator. It will identify not only where hatchery programs are impeding the recovery of salmon, but also where there are opportunities to intelligently employ hatcheries to increase harvest without impeding recovery. The model for this collaborative review will be the Hatchery Scientific Review Panel, which advanced major reforms in Puget Sound. This effort, and its extension to the Columbia Basin, continues to have strong bipartisan support in Congress.

Decisions and commitments on harvest and hatcheries will continue to be through a network of federal, state, tribal, and Canadian decision-makers.

For more information on salmon harvests and hatcheries, visit the Northwest Region's website.

Salmon Harvest & Hatcheries
Harvest and hatcheries are two of the four Hs; the others are habitat and hydropower. The four Hs are human-controlled factors that affect salmon species’ survival and recovery. NOAA Fisheries oversees salmon harvest and hatchery activities as part of agency responsibilities under the Endangered Species Act and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.

Harvest includes commercial, recreational and tribal fishing. Management of those fisheries in the Northwest is a cooperative process involving federal, state, tribal and Canadian representatives. There are different management responsibilities and mechanisms depending on where the fishing is done and who is doing it.


Hatcheries Artificial propagation is any assistance provided by man in Pacific salmon reproduction. Hatcheries are artificial propagation facilities designed to produce fish for harvest, or for escaping harvest to spawn. A conservation hatchery differs from a production hatchery since it specifically tries to supplement or restore naturally spawning salmon populations. Artificial propagation, especially the use of production hatcheries, has been a prominent feature of Pacific salmon fisheries enhancement efforts for several decades. The recent decline of many natural populations has prompted the development of another role for artificial propagation: assisting in conservation of salmon populations.




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