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Fishing Groups Ask for Emergency Steps to Save Salmon

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Four fishery conservation groups have asked state and federal fishery and water officials to convene an urgent meeting to save California Central Valley Chinook salmon runs from the drought.

 

 

Source: San Francisco Bay Area Indymedia


“We have a potentially dire situation in which a large percentage of 2013 Central Valley salmon may be lost if no action is taken,” said Bill Jennings, Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance.


“Salmon have been suffering from a manmade drought for decades and this years’ lack of rainfall exacerbates the problem. We’re calling on the state and federal government to save this year’s salmon run, which can be done if we act now.”


“All four of the Central Valley Chinook runs are in immediate peril due to the drought and a large percentage of the 2013 production may be lost if no action is taken,” said Marc Gorelnik of the Coastside Fishing Club.


Poor water management of rivers and reservoirs by the Brown and Obama administrations has also exacerbated the impact of the drought.


Below is the joint press release from the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, Golden Gate Salmon Association, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations and Coastside Fishing Club:


Catching and moving salmon out of deadly drought zone needed.

The California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, Golden Gate Salmon Association, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations and Coastside Fishing Club have asked state and federal fishery and water officials to convene an urgent meeting to save California Central Valley Chinook salmon runs from the drought.

The groups are asking the officials to meet with key leaders from the fishing community (commercial and recreational) along with non-government fishery scientists and other stakeholders, to map out a drought action plan.

“We have a potentially dire situation in which a large percentage of 2013 Central Valley salmon may be lost if no action is taken,” said CSPA Executive Director Bill Jennings. “Salmon have been suffering from a manmade drought for decades and this years’ lack of rainfall exacerbates the problem. We’re calling on the state and federal government to save this year’s salmon run, which can be done if we act now.”

“All four of the Central Valley Chinook runs are in immediate peril due to the drought and a large percentage of the 2013 production may be lost if no action is taken,” said Marc Gorelnik of the Coastside Fishing Club.

Drought has left rivers and reservoirs extremely low during this critical time for incubating fall run salmon eggs and out-migrating fry. Other wild juvenile salmon, including the listed winter and spring run Chinook, are still rearing in the upper portions of rivers waiting for unlikely winter and spring pulse flows to aid in their downstream migration to the sea.

“Juvenile salmon migrate from the rivers to the ocean from mid-January to May so the window of opportunity to act to save these fish is very short,” said charter boat captain and GGSA board chairman Roger Thomas. “This is an avoidable crisis we need to avert because we’ve got a lot of families that depend on salmon to pay the bills.” Thomas is also the president of the Golden Gate Fishermen’s Association, which represents passenger fishing boat owners and operators.

The groups are also asking state and federal fish, wildlife and water managers to consider trapping and moving wild and hatchery juvenile salmon to safety beyond the drought zone and to refrain from weakening already soft flow requirements needed to keep fish alive.


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