Tag Archives: Columbia River Basin

WDFW and partners apply to kill sea lions in Columbia River and tributaries

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, along with a consortium of state and tribal partners, on June 13 submitted an expanded application to lethally remove California and Steller sea lions preying on threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead runs in the Columbia River and its tributaries. California sea lions — and increasingly, Steller sea lions — have been observed in growing numbers in the Columbia River basin, especially in the last decade, the agency said in a press release. These sea lions prey heavily on salmon and steelhead runs listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), including thousands of fish at Bonneville Dam each year.>click to read<23:05

Congress must choose threatened salmon over sea lions

State, federal and local governments have spent too much time and money restoring fish runs in the Columbia River Basin to let those efforts go to waste. The U.S. House recognized this reality last month by passing legislation to make it easier to kill sea lions that feast on threatened salmon and steelhead in the Columbia River and its tributaries. Now, the Senate must step up and push the bill through to the finish line. Northwest senators must be unified in their support for this common-sense measure, which aims to safeguard the billions of dollars invested in preserving fish that are listed under the Endangered Species Act.>click to read<

Groups to file a lawsuit against the EPA following salmon die-off

salmon die off-lawsuitThree environmental groups and two commercial fishing advocacy groups say they will file a lawsuit against the federal government over heat-related fish kills in the Columbia River Basin in the Pacific Northwest. The groups on Monday sent a 60-day notice of their intent to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for what the groups say are violations of the Clean Water Act. The groups say 250,000 adult sockeye salmon died in 2015 due to high temperatures in the Columbia River and lower Snake River. Idaho Rivers United, the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations and the other groups say a die-off could happen again. The groups say the federal agency has failed to create a plan to control water temperatures. Read the rest here 09:43

Wild fish advocates threaten to sue over Columbia hatcheries

Funding of chinook, coho and steelhead fish hatchery programs throughout the Columbia River Basin is being challenged by wild fish advocates who contend that hatchery fish adversely affect struggling native fish stocks. On Wednesday, the Wild Fish Conservancy based in Duvall, Washington, issued a 60-day notice of intent to sue the National Marine Fisheries Service and the U.S. Department of Commerce for funding. Columbia Basin hatchery programs under the Mitchell Act without complying with provisions of the Endangered Species Act. Read the article here 10:22

NMFS issues overfishing notice for 4 northwest salmon stocks, and North Pacific swordfish

The federal agency in charge of managing fisheries has ruled four stocks of Pacific Northwest salmon are being overfished. The National Marine Fisheries Service and the Department of Commerce on Wednesday posted a notice in the Federal Register of the excessive fishing pressures on Chinook and Coho salmon in the Columbia River Basin and along the Washington coast. The notice, which included overfishing findings for , is meant to alert fishery managers that fishing pressures are driving salmon populations down. Read the rest here 09:10

Native American tribes start yearly harvest of eel-like fish, the Lamprey

The jawless, gray fish are a traditional food source for tribal members in the Columbia River Basin, which stretches from the Oregon coast to Canada and into Idaho, Montana and Washington. Lampreys grow to about 2 feet long and are prized for their rich, fatty meat. Tribes have been instrumental in advocating for lamprey restoration, and the government has started paying attention. That’s because lampreys also offer an alternate food source for sea lions and other predators that otherwise would be munching on threatened salmon. Read the rest here 07:58