Central California Coast Coho Salmon
The Central California Coast coho salmon is an endangered species. NOAA Fisheries selected it as one of our nine Species in the Spotlight because it is at a high risk of extinction. NOAA Fisheries’ West Coast Region, along with the Science Centers, work to protect and conserve this species under the Endangered Species Act.
ESA Listing Status: Threatened on October 31, 1996 (61 FR 56138) and then Endangered on June 28, 2005 (70 FR 37159); updated April 14, 2014 (79 FR 20802)
ESU Description: This evolutionarily significant unit, or ESU, includes naturally spawned coho salmon originating from rivers south of Punta Gorda, California to and including Aptos Creek, as well as such coho salmon originating from tributaries to San Francisco Bay. This ESU also includes coho salmon from the following artificial propagation programs:
- Don Clausen Fish Hatchery Captive Broodstock Program
- Scott Creek/King Fisher Flats Conservation Program
- Scott Creek Captive Broodstock Program.
Current Population Trends: Central California Coast Coho Salmon Status Reviews and 5-Year Updates
Critical Habitat: Designated May 5, 1999 (64 FR 24049)
Protective Regulations: Issued under ESA Section 9
Recovery Plan: Central California Coast Coho Salmon Recovery Plan (2012)
NOAA Fisheries delineated eight recovery domains, or geographic recovery planning areas, for the ESA-listed salmon and steelhead populations on the West Coast. The North Central California Coast Recovery Domain extends from the Redwood Creek watershed in Humboldt County south through Aptos Creek. It includes the tributaries of San Francisco Bay, but excludes the Sacramento-San Joaquin River basins (see map of recovery domains). There are five ESA-listed salmon and steelhead species in this domain:
- California Coastal Chinook salmon
- Northern California steelhead
- Central California Coast steelhead
- Central California Coast coho salmon
- Southern Oregon and Northern California Coast coho salmon (which has its own Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast Recovery Domain)
NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region manages recovery planning and implementation for this domain through its California Coastal Area Office.
Working with its partners, NOAA Fisheries published a recovery plan for Central California Coast coho salmon in September 2012. The plan is based on the biological needs of the fish and provides the foundation for restoring the populations to healthy levels.
Species in the Spotlight
Central California Coast Coho salmon is at a high risk of extinction, so NOAA Fisheries designated it as a Species in the Spotlight. We have created a special action plan targeting efforts vital for stabilizing the population to prevent its extinction. The plan is based on information and strategies in the recovery plan.
Five-Year Action Plan (2016-2020)
- Coho Salmon Status Reviews and Five-Year Updates
- Coho Salmon Federal Register Notices
- Salmon and Steelhead Federal Register Rules and Notices prior to August 2019
- Coho Salmon Maps & GIS Data
- Salmon Publications
- Salmon and Steelhead Hatcheries on the West Coast
- Learn about what you can do to help endangered and threatened salmon recover
- Related Stories
If you have questions, would like to learn more about recovery efforts in your watershed, or would like to get involved directly, please contact:
West Coast Region - California Coastal Office