Wild Fish Conservancy is Formerly Washington Trout
From 1989 to 2007, Wild Fish Conservancy operated under the name Washington Trout, building a reputation as a leading advocate for the conservation and recovery of the Northwest’s wild-fish ecosystems. In February 2007, in order to better reflect and more effectively communicate our mission and expanding goals, we became the Wild Fish Conservancy.
The new name is not meant to imply any fundamental change in our goals or strategies, but rather to clarify them, and to minimize ambiguities regarding our mission and affiliations. Washington Trout was always about more than just trout. From the beginning, we engaged in research, advocacy, and restoration initiatives aimed at protecting, preserving, and restoring Washington’s native fish populations, including populations of wild salmon, native char, marine rockfish, and even relatively unknown but vitally important species like Pacific lamprey, pygmy whitefish, and Olympic mud minnows.
Wild Fish Conservancy’s primary focus has been and will remain the wild-fish resources of Washington State, but the organization always has and will continue to range significantly farther afield to effectively advocate for wild-fish conservation in Washington. Research on wild-fish populations and habitats in places as far away as Kamchatka, Russia has helped to inform our conservation and restoration initiatives right here at home, and resource-management policies in Alaska, British Columbia, Idaho, Oregon, and California can have a significant effect on wild-fish populations in Washington. A less geographically specific name will help to avoid potential confusion among funders, agencies, and even coalition partners we work with outside Washington State.
Of course for an established, well regarded organization, the choice for a new name required significant consideration. We wanted a name that was dynamic, meaningful, and did credit to the organization, its members, and supporters. We needed a name that accurately described what we do and what we’re about: advocating for scientifically credible and socially responsible wild-fish management; providing primary research on the status of wild-fish populations and habitats; restoring the capacity of wild-fish habitats to function ecologically; and educating the public about the role and value of healthy wild-fish ecosystems.
Ultimately, we determined that Wild Fish Conservancy is the name that most faithfully and clearly communicates who we are. With your help, the Wild Fish Conservancy will continue to work for wild fish everyday.