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01/14/20

Wild Fish Runs e-newsletter

Winter 2020

Jan 14, 2020

In case you missed our Winter 2020 Wild Fish Runs e-newsletter in your inbox, here's an online version. We hope you enjoy these articles put together by our staff summarizing a few of WFC's major accomplishments in 2019 and updates on what to expect in 2020.

If you aren't currently subscribed and are interested in receiving Wild Fish Runs and other updates on our work, subscribe today.

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Photo: NOAA

Wild Fish Enthusiasts,

Thanks to your support in 2019, we celebrated a year full of landmark victories and important progress essential to the recovery of the northwest's iconic wild fish and Southern Residents.

Policymakers in state, federal, and First Nation governments took actions based on WFC's research on the dangers of industrial aquaculture and the benefits of selective salmon fishing gears. Agency scientists and fisheries managers worked with WFC to protect threatened wild populations and shift away from harmful salmon hatchery and harvest approaches toward a new vision. And WFC's outreach efforts led the public to rally in support of wild salmon, killer whales, and the ecosystems they depend on.

We’ve put together this edition of our Wild Fish Runs e-newsletter to share a few of these major accomplishments from the past twelve months, and to update you on our continued research, outreach, and advocacy efforts already in action in 2020. I hope you enjoy the articles put together by our staff.

I want to sincerely thank WFC's supporters, volunteers, colleagues, and staff for all you've made possible in 2019. Here's to another year of success.

Onward,


Kurt Beardslee, Executive Director<

All of the work described below is made possible with the support of our members. If you want to support WFC's science-based initiatives in 2020, please consider donating today.
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SUSTAINABLE HARVEST

Another Successful Year for the Columbia River Fish Trap
Year after year, momentum for WFC's fish trap research continues to grow at a pace no one could predict. In the article below, you'll learn all about our success and progress in 2019, from testing a new design, publishing peer-reviewed research, sharing trap-caught fish with a James Beard award-winning chef, and laying the groundwork for the application and coastwide expansion of selective fishing methods that can protect wild salmon, steelhead, and orcas.
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OUR SOUND, OUR SALMON

Victories in the Net Pen Battle


In 2019, WFC's Our Sound, Our Salmon campaign built on our landmark legislative victory through continued efforts to protect Puget Sound from industrial open-water net pens. Over the past twelve months, we successfully held Cooke Aquaculture accountable for $2.75 million in Clean Water Act violations, published research exposing an exotic virus in Puget Sound net pens, and launched a new initiative to fight Cooke Aquaculture's dangerous new industrial fish farm proposal.
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HABITAT PROTECTION & RESTORATION
Restoration Update
From WFC's first days—over 30 years ago—identifying and understanding priority wild fish habitat and restoring natural watershed processes has been core to our mission. Properly functioning wild-fish habitats are complex, dynamic, and self-maintaining. We develop projects intended to recreate these same type of natural conditions, ranging in scale from local fish passage restoration at culverts to improving connectivity of floodplain habitats. We hope you enjoy the article below with updates on two of WFC's model restoration projects.

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HATCHERY REFORM
A Major Victory for Puget Sound Steelhead
This spring, Washington State settled an Endangered Species Act lawsuit with WFC, agreeing to phase out use of Skamania hatchery summer-run steelhead stocks in Puget Sound rivers by 2022 (except where a federally-approved management plan is in place). This hatchery program, which uses a highly-domesticated stock, poses significant genetic risks to wild Puget Sound stocks and has long been recognized by NOAA Fisheries as a threat to the survival and recovery of threatened Puget Sound steelhead. Learn more about the settlement and the risks the Skamania hatchery program poses in the article below.

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PUBLISHED RESEARCH IN 2019
This year, we're proud to share new peer-reviewed papers authored by WFC staff members and published in 2019.

This research has already strengthened wild fish recovery efforts by:
1) demonstrating the important role fish traps can play in recovering and protecting threatened and endangered fish in commercial fisheries,

2) informing coastal cutthroat conservation efforts,
3) preventing the spread of an exotic virus in Puget Sound net pens.


Click below to learn more and read the papers.
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If you want to support more research, education, and advocacy initiatives in 2020, please consider making a donation today!

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