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Captive Rearing of Pacific Salmon and Steelhead in the Pacific Northwest

Captive broodstock research to support endangered species recovery.

Some ESA-threatened and endangered Pacific salmon and steelhead populations require intensive, full life-cycle rearing (a captive broodstock) for genetic maintenance and recovery efforts. The Northwest Fisheries Science Center's Manchester Research Station has developed captive broodstock technologies and implemented freshwater and seawater programs for over 40 years. Captive broodstock projects benefit from staff involvement in Biological Review Teams, Recovery Teams, Interagency Hatchery Design Teams, Technical Oversight Committees, and numerous interagency groups rebuilding and enhancing salmon populations in the Pacific Northwest.

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Redfish Lake Sockeye salmon embryos are prepared for shipping to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game for further incubation, rearing and release.
Redfish Lake Sockeye salmon embryos are prepared for shipping to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game for further incubation, rearing and release.

Research

We conduct research to:

  • Produce adult salmon for regional ESA recovery and reintroduction actions.
  • Refine captive rearing technology for the conservation of ESA listed stocks.
  • Refine application of captive rearing technology (e.g., breeding versus adult release) to recover ESA-listed populations.
  • Provide advice on the appropriate use of captive rearing to the West Coast Region Office.

Current Projects

  • Production of ESA-listed Snake River Sockeye Salmon for use in recovery actions.
  • Determining the effect of feed and feed ration on the growth, age of maturation, and egg quality of Sockeye Salmon.
  • Comparing the effects of direct versus gradual seawater acclimation on the survival, growth, age of maturation, and reproductive quality of Sockeye Salmon.
  • Analyze long-term dataset to determine how multigenerational captive breeding affects reproductive traits.
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Application of ultrasound technology to assess the sex and maturation status of adult Nooksack River Chinook salmon raised in captivity.
Application of ultrasound technology to assess the sex and maturation status of adult Nooksack River Chinook salmon raised in captivity.

Collaborators

  • NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region Office
  • Idaho Department of Fish and Game
  • Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Shoshone-Bannock Tribes
  • Nez Perce Tribe
  • Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation
  • Lummi Nation
  • Nooksack Indian Tribe
  • Stillaquamish Tribe of Indians

Contact

Barry BerejikianFisheries Conservation and Enhancement Program

 

Last updated by Northwest Fisheries Science Center on September 14, 2020