: Genetically Identical
In regards to the Feds new ploy to count hatchery fish the same as wild ones, the simile that comes to mind is: I can take a T bone steak out to my barbecue, get the coals just right and grill it to medium rare perfection or have the Feds cook it for me by boiling it in a pail of soapy dish water. What the heck, they're both genetically identical!
Also dams are fine for searun fish, judging by recent hatchery returns :mad: :confused:
09-15-2004, 01:36 PM
The feds didn't say hatchery and wild fish were genetically identical. A federal judge in Oregon said that the feds must count both hatchery and wild fish when making a decision to list or not list a rivers salmon run if the feds did not establish that there were clear genetic differences between the hatchery and wild fish. NOAA Fisheries has simply responsed to the judge's order on the river the case was about.
The feds have not said there is no difference between hatchery and wild fish. They have said in the new wild fish policy, which was forced by another Oregon federal judge named Redden, that if there is little genetic difference found between a hatchery stock and wild stock in a particular river, they will be managed as if they were equivalent fish. This is very diffferent that sayiing that wild and hatchery fish are genetically identical. And it only applies to those runs on those rivers where it has been through science that there is very little difference between the hatchery and wild fish of a particular species.
In fact, in response the Jude Redden' ruling, NOAA-Fisheries kept all of the Columbia river stocks of salmon and steelhead listed except for the Deschutes steelhead. I fail to see how this indicates the feds have said or decided that hatchery and wild fish are genetically identical.
09-18-2004, 10:38 AM
Feds with Conservative Republican Legislators, and your analogy is pretty damn good. More so than you may realize. Flytyer is correct in that NOAA Fisheries has not come out and said they are the same fish, however, this administration, and much of the conservative legislative base that is really pressing this issue believe there is no difference. "If they swim like a fish, smell like a fish, and taste like a fish, they must be the same fish..." or so the thought goes. And like it or not, that same administration and legislative cohort has impressed A LOT of influence on the current stance at NOAA. To those who believe otherwise, grab one's ears, pull one's head out, and soon... In NOAA Fisheries recent BO on the Columbia River/Snake River stocks, you are seeing the heavy influence of industry and municipalities "dependent" upon the Snake River Dams (and all those on the Columbia as well) weighing in heavily on the outcome. Welcome to politics and Government. For better or worse, it's the reality that human needs (and likely human greed) will always way in heavily when it comes to public resources, whether it be fish, federal lands, air, water, or the like. And with an administration that is sympathetic to the conservative base, those views will weigh in even more heavily... There are simply those people, either ignorant enough or blinded by their own needs and desires, who will discount the value of things wild if it means their pocket book is affected. What's worse, many of them seem to have little concience when it comes to spilling the B.S. to support their weak position. The idea that because runs of recent have been generally good as being an indicator of the "success" and "compatibility" of the Columbia Basin hydroelectric system and it's management is ludicrious (it's the oceans, stupid), but they've bought into it, hook, line, and sinker (or is that a Jock Scott I see in the corner of their over-sized maw's?!?! :wink: :wink: ). They've bought into it because it SEEMS to support their contention. Never mind the Redfish Lake sockeye run is still in peril and hasn't seen the improvements in runs... Something to ponder---if the runs have been so good WITH the dams in place, imagine what they WOULD have been had the dams NOT been there!!! :eek: :whoa:
I still keep hoping for a regime change in November, hopefully then we'll see some kinder, gentler and more rational management of this valued resource...
Don't forget to VOTE!!!! :devil: :devil:
09-18-2004, 02:37 PM
I'm going to play devil's advocate with this. :lildevl: If run size is mostly dependent on ocean conditions, doesn't this then mean that it matters little what our fisheries managers do since the major factor would be ocean conditions over which they have no control. And by extension of the ocean condition factor, does it not also mean that it matters not how many wild fish are harvested, since their abundance would likewise be dependent on ocean conditions?
What I'm saying is we have to be careful saying the major factor is ocean conditions, hatchery production, wild fish harvest, dams, tribal netting in the rivers, etc. The truth is that all of these are factors is the size or abundance of fish runs. We also must not forget that when a run is depleted to near extinction (like the Snake River sockeye were), it takes a long time for the run to rebound, if it ever does.
My point is that one must take all factors into consideration and not put most of the blame on one of them. And before someone accuses me of being in favor of dams, I am not. In fact, I'd like to see all of the Columbia River dams, Snake River Dams, and any other dams that prevent anadromous fish from getting to their historic spawning grounds torn down or breeched and have federal legislation preventing the building of any dam that would prevent anadromous fish from reaching their spawning grounds.
However, the dams have already been built and there is little indication that the feds (or states for that matter) will require them to be torn down. Therefore, we have to learn how to advocate for the fish without the dams coming down. Remember, the Columbia River and Snake River dams were sited and approved for building during the tenure of self-identified conservationist administrations of a different political party than is now in office. We must also keep in mind that Congress also plays a huge part in how dams are run or where they are built or if they will be torn down or breached since they appropriate the money for these things, and the party that was in control of Congress when the Columbia and Snake River dams were built was not the party of the current adminstration. Then you must also add to this the federal courts and various rulings they have made, which also affect fish management and operation of the dams.
The truth is that neither major political party or their appointed department heads or nominated judges has been very good conservationists during the last 70 years.
09-18-2004, 08:28 PM
However, when things have essentially changed little in the better part of the last 15 years in the management of the Snake River and Columbia River dams, besides some barging and attempts at flushing, w/ no real effective improvement in spawning habitats, rearing habitats, etc. (at a basin level scale), and yet you see these changes in population, both in the positive, and in the negative, you have to start looking at the factors that are changing. And Ocean conditions has been a huge one. El Nino/La Nina affects are well documented on anadromous fisheries, and where they end up during their ocean expeditions, as well as their succesfull rearing, or lack there of. Am I saying that none of the other stuff matters? Most certainly not. The larger issue behind decline in stocks, listed species, etc. isn't the population sizes (cause hatcheries "prove", more or less, that we can affect that in the positive), but the loss of the unique genetic material in each run. As populations decline, bottle necks form, with an increased risk of the loss of the genetic material, if we have a series of declining run years. The Redfish Lake Sockeye is an excellent example of that. Only a handful of fish returned, with documented significant loss of returning adults through the columbia and snake river dams. some where around 80-90% of the adults that passed Bonneville didn't make it to the spawning grounds in the upper Salmon. With a run of 250,000, not such a big deal. But with a run of 120, all the sudden a very big deal. Again, if we were dealing with native runs in the hundreds of thousands IN EACH stream system, local conditions, dams, harvest wouldn't be such a big deal. But because we aren't, and essentially every fish counts that can make it back continuing the propogation of that valuable genetic material, those factors do become important... All things are cumulative, and no, removing the dams won't solve all our problems, but it's one of many factors that could have been address, and incrementally improved runs and reduced risks of extinction. In the case of the dams, I believe those would have been some HUGE increments! :eek:
As far as the politics? don't disagree with you there, for the most part. But before comparing politicians and parties of yester-year to today, note that it was a republican that enacted much of the best conservation legislation to date (Richard Nixon), and more importantly, a republican of yester-year is not the same republican now, and neither are the dem's. Yesteryear's Dixie-crats are this year's republicans and vice versa. As far as the influence, I think it's significant, because the rules, regs, special orders, etc. that they set in place (and this includes both the executive and the legislative branches) sets the tone for how resource issues are addressed. The Roadless Rule, under the Clinton Administration, is a perfect example. That rule has SIGNIFICANTLY influenced the direction and management of USFS lands in the western US. And so has W's unwillingness to support it now. Those rulings, and lack there of, direct and influence activities on the ground, and where the money goes to do it. With dam removal "taken off the list", the various resource management agencies, etc. will no longer look to that option, and instead, spend their money and efforts elsewhere. I hope they're as successful as they think they are going to be, but recent history indicates to me their anticipated success is a far cry from what will be reality.
I agree that we, as concerned conservationist, must keep our eye on all the factors. We would have been fools to think that the moratorium, had it stood, would be the salvation of native stocks in western Washington. That would have been a damn good step (and it's not like "we" didn't get a step forward in the final outcome, tho not nearly as large) in the right direction, but much more needs to be done. so to with the Columbia River and Snake River systems, etc.
so is this argument circular or what??? :chuckle: damn, i need to get my stolen gear replaced and get back on the river!!!
09-20-2004, 10:44 PM
Just to let you know I am still trying to find the G-5!!! One post '98 for you and one pre '98 for me!
Don't know what the correct party is for the fish and people, but I've worked on enough resource issues over the past 28 years to know that if we hope for a political answer to a biological question...., you won't like the answer!!
As you know I have great respect for at least a 2 party system. Without it we have nothing. If you vote republican that is your choice, fine. But do you see the immense changes in the republican party over the last 20 years that are totally anti conservation and environment. Not saying that the democrats are much better but at least we moved forward ever so slowly. Over the last 4 years with congress and the senate controled by this new republican agenda we have lost so much hard won ground that was won by republicans and demercrats alike over the last 40 years. When groups like the Pacific Legal Foundation and other far too conservative groups that are backed by those that believe in profit at any cost have the full ear of the administration we are in trouble. You republicans need to bring your party back into the main. Groups like the PLF are as extreme right as groups like Earth liberation Front are left. The Dems would never invite such groups as ELF into deal making why has your party gone so right? And please don't tell me that there is a big difference between two such groups because ELF uses violence and PLF uses its money to fight in court and to influence the pols. Both ways create violence against the enviroment and we in the main stream of things get screwed once again.
So I ask you and any other who will vote republican this election are you concerned about where your party has gone on the environment?
09-21-2004, 02:34 PM
You're right, leave ANY decision to the government, whether it be a state or federal legislative body, and you'll not be happy with the results... at that level, every problem can be fixed with a 5lb sledge hammer and a lot of ignorance... :eek: :hihi: as an employee of the federal government, i "appreciate" that fact all to well...
As far as the G-5's, was able to replace mine on eBay, still haven't seen a pre-98 there, nor with the contacts i've made in my search. will keep an eye out for you...
09-21-2004, 03:00 PM
I vote for people of nearly all parties because I always vote on the basis of all the issues important to me that any given candidate supports and has voted for in the past. And I really do not like the federal court decision that ordered WA State to change it non-partisan primary elections either. I much the old and now federal court deemed illegal primary system WA State had until this year. I detest having to decide on a single party's primary ballot to vote in the primary. In other words, I am an old fashioned independent who would like to see more than 2 major political parties; but alas, the US has had a two party system since the 1790's and recent lawsuits filed in federal courts in various states to keep Ralph Nader off the general election ballad is detestable in my opinion.
The above said, I also detest both the property destruction/violence of the ELF and the use of the federal courts by the PLF (and others groups both on the left and the right) to get law and policy changed through caveat. The law change should be done through the legislative process and policy change should be done through the agencies involved, not through the courts or the violence or property distruction of groups from either the far right or the far left, and on this I think we agree.
And lest we forget, it was two federal judges that ruled NOAA-Fisheries had to change what they were doing, not the agency, not the president, not the legislative bodies, and not the political parties.
You are correct about the need for those of us who care about forests, rivers, fish, and wildlife to stay informed and vote for those who are consevationists. Otherwise, sportsfishers, hunters, hikers, campers, and boaters will see continued depletion of the resource. However, neither major party has a monopoly on promoting conservation, there are poor conservationists in each party and those who are good conservationists in each as well. We should vote for the candidate, not the party, again I think we agree on this too.
This is what my posts herein have been about, the need for us to look at what the candidates for state and federal office in our various districts are for and what they have voted for before and not because a candidate is a member of a particular political party. Since the candidate either represents our views or doesn't and the candidate is the one who introduces and votes for or against legislation and for or against approval of federal judge appointment, the candidate (not the party, who doesn't get to do these things) is the important thing to keep in mind when voting.
09-21-2004, 09:57 PM
the role of this administration in the recent rulings from NOAA Fisheries and the dams, hatchery vs. wild, etc. and conservation issues in general, read Ted William's recent article in Fly Rod and Reel. It's laid out quite well, in how the administration has influenced the current chain of events, and what exactly may be up their sleeves. scary as hell.... The part that scares me the most - the observation that given the current interpretation by NOAA Fisheries of the rulings and its latest BiOp (biological opinion), that NOAA Fisheries could determine that resident rainbow trout in the Columbia River Basin system could be counted as steelhead, because "genetically", they're the same/similar enough critter... :eek: :eek:
I also like the observation of setting up the rules and regs to be "sued" by the administrations chief contributors to make it appear the courts are the bad guys, rather than the administration... Just like the Roadless Rule..... :mad: :mad:
While in November, we MAY indeed be looking at a story of the lesser of two evils, it is still very clear to me there is a definite lesser evil between the two contenders, and I'll take that over the current administration any day... :lildevl: :eek: Did I just show my cards??? Oh well...
09-22-2004, 03:23 PM
Unfortunately Mr. Williams based his article on the "draft wild salmon policy" for the Columbia River Basin and that is not what was adopted by NOAA-Fisheries. NOAA-Fisheries final Columbia River Basin Salmon Management Plan (re: policy) was given to Judge Redden (not Judge Hogan as Mr. Williams implied, Hogan was involved only in the coastal Oregon coho case, and it only applied to one river system, not the Columbia Basin case) in the first week of July.
The final Salmon Management Plan adopted by NOAA-Fisheries made no change in the status of 25 of the 27 stocks of salmon and steelhead found in the Columbia Basin, and they remain under threatened or endangered status as before the Judge Redden ordered rewrite of the plan. One stock was recommened for delisting, that is Oregon's Deschutes River steelhead. One stock was found to need furthur study to determine if it should remain listed, that was the Grand Rhonde steelhead. And the other 25 did not have their status changed.
The Columbia Basin Salmon Policy case was also not filed in Judge Redden's federal court by the Pacific Legal Foundation (as Mr. William implied), it was filed by the Northwest Power Producers as an attempt to keep operating the Columbia River Basin dams for mazimum power production instead of mazimized fish survival.
Also, the Judge Hogan ruling applied to only a single Oregon coast river system and only applied to the coho in that river system. NOAA-Fisheries and Oregon DFW included the hatchery coho in that river in the ESA and then excluded the hatchery fish from its final conclusion that the wild coho were threatened. Judge Hogan simply ruled that if NOAA-Fisheries and Oregon DFW include hatchery coho in the ESA, they cannot then exclude them from wild fish for purposes of finding the wild coho needed the protection of listing under the ESA.
Mr. Williams should know all three of the points I mentioned herein and informed the readership of Rod & Reel of them. He did not do this and that is a mark of poor journalism. I am aware that there is a lead time of several months for any magazine going to press and that there are deadlines Mr. Williams has to meet for submission of his article. However, he should have at the very least told the readership that the policy he credited NOAA-Fisheries with propogating was only found in a memo and wasn't even an official draft of the management plan, let alone the final plan that was submitted to Judge Redden. Mr. Williams should have also told his readers that the Columbia River Basin case was decided by Judge Redden. Instead he left Redden's name completely out of the article and only mentioned Judge Hogan, which was a completely different case that had no bearing on the Columbia Basin case. Likewise, he left out the important information about the Columbia Basin case being filed by the Northwest Power Producers; instead he left his readers assume, or infer, that the case filed by the Pacific Legal Foundation was the reason why NOAA-Fisheries revisited the Columbia Basin Salmon Management Plan, despite it not having been brought by the Pacific Legal Foundation. It was very disengenuous of Mr. Williams to leave these very important facts out of his article.
So what really happened? NOAA-Fisheries made no change of status for 25 of the 27 affected stocks of salmon and steelhead leaving them listed as either threatened or endangered as they were before Judge Redden ordered NOAA-Fisheries to review and rewrite the Columbia Basin Salmon Recovery Plan. One stock, the Deschutes steelhead were recommended for delisting. On stock, the Grand Rhonde steelhead were recommended to be considered for possible delisting. This is hardly the wholesale screwing of the fish Mr. Williams said was happening.
And in the Oregon coastal coho case of Judge Hogan, Oregon DFW and NOAA-Fisheries simply need to list that river's wild and hatchery fish in serarate catagories in order to meet the requirements of Judge Hogan's ruling to have the wild coho in that particular river system re-listed under the ESA.
As to the Sacramento River case brought by the CA Central Irrigation District and farmers that asked the federal court to include wild resident rainbow trout in its count of steelhead in the Sacramental River and its tributaries where steelhead are found in order to show that there was an abundance of "wild rainbow trout (and steelhead)". Thus, removing the wild steelhead from being listed as threatened. The Judge in this case ruled that resident rainbow trout and steelhead were sufficiently different in morphology and behavior to be considered different fish. Mr. Williams also left out the fact in the Sacramento River case that NOAA-Fisheries argued wild steelhead were different from resident rainbow trout. Mr. Williams left this paragraph's very improtant information out of his article as well. Yes, I am aware that the ruling in this Sacramento River case didn't come until July and that was probably after Mr. Williams' deadline for the current issue of Rod & Reel; however, he should have been honest enough to tell his readers that the case hadn't been ruled on and that NOAA-Fisheries argued resident rainbows and steelhead were different fish, which should never be considered together when deciding on the numbers of steelhead in a river system.
Mr. Williams was a very un-professional journalist in this article of his in Rod & Reel simply because he left out very improtant information about where the cases were, what was happening in them, when rulings were expected to be made, and that NOAA-Fisheries has to comply with the rulings of two federal judges. Also, he left out the very important fact that the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Judge Hogan was correct in his ruling in the Oregon coastal coho case, which means that NOAA-Fisheries and Oregon DFW will have to make sure not to include the number of hatchery fish in the river when deciding if a wild coho stock needs the protection or threatened or endangered listing status.
Mr. Williams has a huge readership across the country composed of people who are concerned about the environment and the health of fish stocks, many of whom tell others what they read (or "learned") in his articles; therefore, he has a duty to accurately inform the readership of Rod & Reel, and in this case he did not do so. Instead, he left out important information that leads readers to infer or assume NOAA-Fisheries is abandoning wild fish protection, which is not true. And he also wrote his article, supposedly based upon all the facts, in a manner designed to inflame and anger sportsmen all the while either outright blaming or inferring it was the current administration's plan to abandon protection of salmon and steelhead in the Pacific Northwest.
09-22-2004, 05:24 PM
Looks like Ted Williams and Dan Rather get there info from the same person LOL :chuckle:
09-24-2004, 09:37 AM
TJ said it best;
"Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established, should not be changed for light and transient causes; and, accordingly, all experience [has] shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce [the people] under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security." --Thomas Jefferson: Declaration of Independence, 1776. ME 1:29, Papers 1:429