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Not too hot, not too cold, the ocean must be just right

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

Two weeks ago we were on the Dean. This week we go even further north, to Auke Bay near Juneau, Alaska, for our next Science Friday post.   The greater Juneau are is home to several rivers that host wild steelhead runs. Auke Creek is perhaps the most important of these feeder streams, as scientists at the Auke Bay Marine …

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Science Friday: Sand bars, lagoons and moving steelhead

In California, Science Friday by Nick Chambers

Back to back Science Friday posts focusing on California and the unique challenges that steelhead face in the state. This week we pivot from juvenile steelhead coping with ponded pools to a look at juveniles that enter and live seasonally in lagoons at the mouths of creeks and rivers — a phenomenon fairly common in smaller coastal watersheds in California …

Science Friday: Surviving heat, drought and ponded streams

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

It is that time of year again. Heat wave after heat wave.   As summer progresses stream flows will continue to decline all across steelhead country, and in some cases, smaller tributaries will go dry. In other cases, streams won’t be completely dewatered; instead, they will become ponded. This occurs when flows diminish so much that the only remaining surface …

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Science Friday: How does catch and release affect steelhead?

In Oregon, Science Friday by Nick Chambers

Today we review a study on the impacts of catch and release angling on wild steelhead in the Bulkley River, the largest tributary to British Columbia’s legendary Skeena system. Conducted by Will Twardek and several others, this study looked into the effects of catch and release, air exposure and fight time on behavior and survival to spawning.   The study …

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Science Friday: Do these lipids make me look fat?

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

For most anglers who have encountered both winter and summer steelhead, it’s abundantly clear there are differences between the two races of fish.   For one, they enter freshwater at different times of the year, although there is some overlap.   In addition, there are physical differences. Summer steelhead tend to be more fusiform — sleeker and more firm bodied …

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Science Friday: Certain genetic families survive better in hatcheries and might help explain why hatchery steelhead do poorly in nature

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

Spring is here and we’ve got a real shot of warm weather on the West Coast. Certainly, spawning steelhead appreciate the ecological effects of this boost in thermal energy.   Last week we reviewed a recent paper on repeat spawning in steelhead in the Hood River, Oregon. This week, we return to the Hood to look at another paper out …

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Science Friday: Do it once, do it twice. The tradeoffs of repeat spawning in steelhead

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

We are back after a short break, after coming through a heavy dose of conservation work. That work, in part, helped convince the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the National Marine Fisheries Service to re-open the iconic Skagit River for a catch-and-release season for wild steelhead. It feels like a new day has dawned for steelheaders in Puget …

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Stock Recruit Curves And Wild Steelhead, A Good Match?

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers

In several recent posts we have discussed the concept of density dependence and how it is used in fisheries management. Today we dive in deeper and talk about the stock-recruitment relationship, density dependence, and how the results of such models are applied to managing steelhead.   First, let’s define some terms. Stock refers to, in this context, a population of …