Kelt Reconditioning and Reproductive Success Evaluation Research – 2019 Annual Technical Report
The Kelt Reconditioning and Reproductive Success Evaluation Project is a research, monitoring, and evaluation (RM&E) uncertainties category project funded through the 2008 Columbia Basin Fish Accords. The objectives are to evaluate methodologies to produce viable artificially reconditioned repeat steelhead spawners and to determine the productivity of repeat spawners. Work occurs in both the Yakima and Snake river basins. We focused on collecting steelhead kelts at juvenile bypass facilities at both Prosser and Lower Granite dams. These kelts were reconditioned (given prophylactic treatments and fed a specially formulated diet) at Prosser, Nez Perce Tribal, and Dworshak National Fish hatcheries. Survival of long-term reconditioned kelts has been 43% (20 years) at Prosser Hatchery and 40% (9 years; 47% over the last 7 years) for mixed stock collections from Lower Granite Dam and reconditioned at Nez Perce Tribal and Dworshak National Fish hatcheries. In 2019, unmarked upstream “wild” migrant adult steelhead return counts were at the 8th lowest across the region since records were kept in this regard since the mid 1990’s. These low return years typically translate into lower abundance of kelts but also means that successful capture/reconditioning of kelts has a bigger contribution towards improving low population returns.
Hatch, D., R. Branstetter, J. Stephenson, A. Pierce, S. Willis, J. Newell, A. Matala, W. Bosch, S. Everett, N. Graham, L. Medeiros, L. Jenkins, B. Hoffman, N. Hoffman, T. Cavileer, J. Nagler, M. Fiander, C. Frederickson, J. Blodgett, D. Fast, and R. Johnson. Kelt Reconditioning and Reproductive Success Evaluation Research. 1/1/2019 – 12/31/2019 Bonneville Power Administration Annual Report, 2007-401-00. Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission Technical Report 20-06. Portland, OR. 179p.