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Cumulative Steelhead Hatchery Return Web Page--On the hatchery return page, could you add the target/goal number for each hatchery so we can see how well the run is doing?

Answer

Hi and thanks for your inquiry/suggestion. 

 

We do have broodstock collection targets for the facilities listed on the “Cumulative Steelhead Hatchery Returns” page (they are listed below); however, using these targets to gauge the status of the run is problematic because most of fish returning to these sites are removed by anglers.  Therefore trapping numbers alone don’t truly reflect the size of the run. 

 

Hatchery/Trap

Broodstock Target

Dworshak National Fish Hatchery

                       1,800

East Fork Weir

                          28

Oxbow/Hells Canyon Trap

                    1,125

Pahsimeroi Weir

                    1,600

Sawtooth Weir

                    1,350

 

For evaluation purposes we annually monitor the number of adults returning from each rearing hatchery (most are not listed on the web page) which provide a better gauge as to how each facility is contributing to the run and how the run is doing overall.  This is confusing, but let me briefly explain how Idaho’s hatchery steelhead program operates because it is very large, diverse, and integrated.

 

All of the hatcheries listed on the hatchery return webpage are broodstock facilities that collect and spawn steelhead.  Most of the eggs produced at broodstock facilities are then transferred to another hatchery (rearing facility) where they are grown for a year prior to release. 

 

We focus our evaluations on rearing facilities because steelhead spend the majority if their “in hatchery” life at these facilities and therefore they are most influential in regards to returning adult steelhead.  We are working on getting the adult return information for each of the rearing hatcheries on the IDFG webpage as well, but in the meantime this information is available in reports on the web (just search “Idaho hatchery steelhead calendar report”).  Dworshak NFH produces a separate report for their facility that can be found on their webpage. 

 

Our calendar reports are produced after the run is complete, so if you are interested in the current run I would use the U.S. Army Corps of Engineering dam count website as they are updated regularly through the season and provide a lot of useful information for past runs as well. 

 

http://www.nwp.usace.army.mil/Missions/Environment/Fish/Reportsandcounts.aspx

 

Cheers and good fishing!