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Idaho’s Salmon: Can We Count Every Last One?

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Abstract

Since the late 1950s, Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) biologists have collected standardized information about the status of salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) in Idaho to assist fisheries management. Currently, IDFG uses indices of production such as redd and parr counts for streams, and adult salmon counts at dams and weirs to assess the recent history of our salmon runs. We depict Idaho anadromous salmon trends using indices for sockeye (O. nerka); spring, summer, and fall chinook salmon (O. tshawytscha); and steelhead (O. mykiss). Counts of redds in index areas provide the best historical indicator of trends and status of spring and summer chinook salmon. Numbers of redds have declined sharply through the last 33 years. All of the naturally reproducing Snake River anadromous salmonid populations, excluding chinook salmon in the Clearwater River drainage and Snake River steelhead, have been listed as endangered pursuant to the federal Endangered Species Act. Hydroelectric development of the mainstem Snake and Columbia rivers is widely recognized as the major factor causing the decline of these populations.

Aggregated trend information is useful, but alone does not provide information needed for future management. We must augment historical information with knowledge about brood-year performance of multiple populations. We are using our indexed production information for life-cycle modeling to assess productivity, a key to assessing recovery actions. Increased monitoring and analyses of indicator populations will better describe salmon status and trends to meet management needs for the future.

Keywords

  • Chinook Salmon
  • Sockeye Salmon
  • Anadromous Salmonid
  • Technical Advisory Committee
  • Fall Chinook Salmon

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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© 1997 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht

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Hassemer, P.F., Kiefer, S.W., Petrosky, C.E. (1997). Idaho’s Salmon: Can We Count Every Last One?. In: Stouder, D.J., Bisson, P.A., Naiman, R.J. (eds) Pacific Salmon & their Ecosystems. Springer, Boston, MA. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4615-6375-4_10

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4615-6375-4_10

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Boston, MA

  • Print ISBN: 978-1-4613-7928-7

  • Online ISBN: 978-1-4615-6375-4

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