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Title: Status and distribution of chinook salmon and steelhead in the interior Columbia River basin and portions of the Klamath River basin [Chapter 12]

Author: Thurow, Russell F.; Lee, Danny C.; Rieman, Bruce E.;

Date: 2000

Source: In: Knudsen, E. Eric; Steward, Cleveland R.; Mac Donald, Donald D.; Williams, Jack E.; Reiser, Dudley W., eds. Sustainable Fisheries Management: Pacific Salmon. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. p. 133-160.

Publication Series: Book Chapter

Description: This chapter summarizes information on presence, absence, current status, and probable historical distribution of steelhead Oncorhynchus mykiss and stream-type (age-1 migrant) and ocean type (age-0 migrant) chinook salmon O. tshawytscha in the interior Columbia River basin and portions of the Klamath River basin. Data were compiled from existing sources and via surveys completed by more than 150 biologists working in the region. We developed models to quantitatively explore relationships among fish status and distribution, the biophysical environment, and land management. Biophysical setting was an important determinant of species distributions and habitat suitability. We applied model results to predict fish presence in unsampled areas and mapped expected distributions in more than 3,700 subwatersheds. Chinook salmon and steelhead are extirpated from more than 50% of their potential historical ranges. Most remaining populations are severely depressed; less than 2% of the watersheds in the current range were classified as supporting strong populations of steelhead or stream-type chinook salmon. Wild, indigenous fish are rare; 22% of remaining steelhead stocks and less than 17% of chinook salmon stocks were judged to be genetically unaltered by hatchery-reared fish. Much of the historical production has been eliminated. However, a core for maintaining and rebuilding functional areas remains. Protection of core areas critical to stock persistence and restoration of a broader matrix of productive habitats will be necessary for productive and sustainable fisheries. This effort will require conservation and restoration of sufficient habitats to ensure the full expression of phenotypic and genotypic diversity in chinook salmon and steelhead.

Keywords: steelhead, Oncorhynchus mykiss, chinook salmon, Oncorhynchus tshawytscha, distribution, diversity

Publication Notes:

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
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Thurow, Russell F.; Lee, Danny C.; Rieman, Bruce E. 2000. Status and distribution of chinook salmon and steelhead in the interior Columbia River basin and portions of the Klamath River basin [Chapter 12]. In: Knudsen, E. Eric; Steward, Cleveland R.; Mac Donald, Donald D.; Williams, Jack E.; Reiser, Dudley W., eds. Sustainable Fisheries Management: Pacific Salmon. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. p. 133-160.

 


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