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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
News-Times Editorial:

Survival of the fittest

It's going to take hip waders to struggle past all the white water of the Oregon Legislature's House Bill 2459. The all salmon (hatchery and wild) are created equal "Salmon Bill" is destined for a wild ride.
The broad-brush approach to salmon is fraught with danger. Recent swirls of controversy over the coloring of farm-raised salmon point to a simple fact. It's easy to confuse the public. Getting any deeper into the equal evolution of salmon brings in the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, the National Marine Fisheries Services, now the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries, the U.S. District Court in Seattle, and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals weighing the protective merits of the Federal Endangered Species Act. Now we can confuse everyone.
Our coastal representative in the House, Alan Brown, R-Newport, has thought through the reasons and benefits of the bill. The basic idea is to proliferate salmon runs. Much of the controversy sprang from ODFW's 2000 clubbing of thousands of hatchery coho in the view that they are a threat to wild runs. The lawsuits and litigation are still running their course through the Ninth U.S. District Court, but the Oregon bill would, as Brown put it, "use these fish (hatchery) as a tool for recovery of the species." This would be a good thing for Oregon and would capitalize on an existing successful salmon recovery.
The bill itself is very clear in its intention: "A wild fish management policy shall treat hatchery fish that are bred from wild stock as wild fish...they will be allowed to reproduce if they return to spawn."
The denominator in this drama is the arena where these fish play out most of their adult life, the ocean. Hatchery fish come back sooner, but the "wild" ones survive better. And that's the point. When it comes to the ocean, survival of the fittest is the mantra. If after traveling thousands of miles throughout the ocean, hatchery fish are met with only a club when they return to spawn, how can a fishery be developed with the traits they were bred for?
We're sure the Senate's Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee will place this bill on its back burner like a hot potato soup. Too bad; it would take some guts to place a made for Oregon industry ahead of a federal decision. But then, we're from the coast and believe in ocean fishing industries, where survival of the fittest has become a way of life. (wcg)

http://www.newportnewstimes.com/nt_news/opinion/nt_opinion.html#TopOfPage

After delivering in Newport I picked up Wednesdays paper and went to the Sizzler for dinner. This about ruined it for me. Never ends does it?

Anyway I think this is a misinformed editorial and based on the coastal mentality down here it doesn't surprise me.

I think Allan Brown should stick to selling tires and biologist stick to managing wild and hatchery fish. Not politicians!

I know a lot of you have seen this lame bill on a thread originally started by lost sailor and maybe have burned out on it, but I want to send a comment on this editorial to the News-Times and would like your opinion.

If anyone would like to send a comment to the News-Times and let them know that not all folks believe a fish is a fish like they do at the coast, here is the email: [email protected]

It says letters sent via email should clearly state that they are for publication.

Dan

[ 05-29-2003, 11:16 PM: Message edited by: DepoeBayDan ]
 

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Good work Dan!!

I will be sending an email later.....

I am off to speak to a Rotary group about our local Watershed Council. Could be interesting as I have been warned I will be in front of the most conservative Rotary Group in town and they know of my feelings about dams, fish and Watershed enhancement programs.

I am a big guy so the target is very clea! :shocked:
 

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DBD - If the editors and Rep. Brown knew the true cost and the actual rate of return of the infamous Fall Cr coho run (forget about their impact on wild coho) they would be asking why the decision to kill 'em off wasn't made years earlier.

Side note: Gerrymandering? :whazzup: I live in the Willamette valley outside Junction City....and Alan Brown of Newport is my state representative? Thanks a lot, Kitzhaber/Bradbury. :hoboy:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The broad-brush approach to salmon is fraught with danger.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">So what was implied by this statement?

Our coastal representative in the House, Alan Brown, R-Newport, has thought through the reasons and benefits of the bill. The basic idea is to proliferate salmon runs.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">So Alan Brown thought through the reasons and benefits of the bill.

Thought? Is he well read on fish biology? Benefits?

The basic idea is to proliferate salmon runs.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">Proliferate salmon runs? Which salmon runs? Hope you don’t mean the ones that have seen the highest numbers in over 50 years! Those wild runs are a result of being left alone and doing there own thing without any proliferation! Doing it the natural way they have always done in the past and what some biologist said they would do if they were left alone to do it.

Much of the controversy sprang from ODFW's 2000 clubbing of thousands of hatchery coho in the view that they are a threat to wild runs.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">There was and is well documented theories that the Fall Creek coho were causing the decline of the Alsea River wild coho. I was told by Bob Buckman (ODFW district biologist) many years ago that if they ended that hatchery run, the Alsea wild coho would rebound. Just a few years ago when they ended the Fall Creek hatchery coho program there was only a few hundred estimated wild coho left in the Alsea basin. Last winter there was over 5,000 estimated wild coho that returned to the Alsea basin. Facts speak for themselves.

but the Oregon bill would, as Brown put it, "use these fish (hatchery) as a tool for recovery of the species."
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">Again, what fish (hatchery) would be used as a tool for recovery of the species? It seems to me and many others that we have tried the hatchery scenario for decades and not only science has showed us problems with hatchery fish, but a lot of us anglers have experienced the disappointing results also.

This would be a good thing for Oregon and would capitalize on an existing successful salmon recovery.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">A good thing? Capitalize on an existing successful salmon recovery? It looks to me where we are leaving our wild coho and chinook alone are producing the healthiest wild runs on the coast!

The bill itself is very clear in its intention: "A wild fish management policy shall treat hatchery fish that are bred from wild stock as wild fish...they will be allowed to reproduce if they return to spawn."
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">Whose intentions are these? Special interest groups? Politicians?

Every avid river fisherman I know or have read about will tell you that broodstock hatchery fish are superior to the typical domesticated hatchery fish. So if you don’t want to accept what science says, most experienced fishermen will tell you that a fish even though it might look the same is simply not the same fish!
Hatchery fish that are bred from wild stock are not the same as wild fish. Close, but we are not playing horse shoes in this game.

Wild fish pick their mates unlike hatchery fish (survival of the fittest). Hatchery broodstock fish are only a small representative number of the total run (only upwards of 60 mates, if you are fortunate, compared to maybe thousands of wild spawners).

Then in the wild the weak eggs and fry are weeded out (survival of the fittest) where as in the hatchery environment the weak are hatched and fry are nurtured in the protected hatchery environment and raised to abnormal large size to compete with the wild fish and environment.

So they are a superior hatchery fish, but as explained, they are not the same as a wild fish.

We have gone through decades of fish management and it didn’t work. Now science and biologist are catching up with the mistakes from the past. Do you want to push them aside and take a chance of going against science and everything we have learned and are learning to fulfill your desire?

I say no! Give them a chance and let them manage according to the latest available science. After all, if you haven’t noticed, things are on an uphill swing. Give credit to great ocean conditions if you want, but I heard and preached the promise of the rebounding wild fish well before we were fortunate to get these great ocean conditions.

Folks, we don’t want to spawn wild broodstock fish with wild fish. Problem is, broodstock fish return later and spawn later than the typical domesticated hatchery fish and there is more likelihood of them spawning together if they stray than domestic fish.

Hatchery fish come back sooner, but the "wild" ones survive better.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">I agree with that 100%.

And that's the point. When it comes to the ocean, survival of the fittest is the mantra.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">What’s the point? Maybe someone can explain this one to me.

If after traveling thousands of miles throughout the ocean, hatchery fish are met with only a club when they return to spawn, how can a fishery be developed with the traits they were bred for?
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">
They weren’t bred for traits! They were bred not knowing there was a difference in one fish and another and mixed with out of basin fish unlike hunting dog’s or race horses where selective breeding has taken place. Science and time has showed us differently!

We're sure the Senate's Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee will place this bill on its back burner like a hot potato soup. Too bad; it would take some guts to place a made for Oregon industry ahead of a federal decision.
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">I hope they do place it on the back burner. I don’t know if it would take guts, but it sure would take sound science that isn’t there to challenge the federal decision!

But then, we're from the coast and believe in ocean fishing industries, where survival of the fittest has become a way of life. (wcg)
<font size="2" face="verdana,arial,helvetica">Yea well remember the passenger pigeon! Or perhaps, the buffalo.

Industries, that says it all!

Dan

[ 05-31-2003, 11:50 PM: Message edited by: DepoeBayDan ]
 
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