March 21, 2023, Special Hatchery Workshop Meeting agenda - WDFW Fish and Wildlife Commission

Minutes and audio/video recordings

8:00 A.M. - 9:30 A.M. – Workshop #1: Overview of the Washington State Hatchery System and Production

This workshop will provide a brief history of WDFW hatchery system, with a focus on hatchery management and production. The risks and benefits of hatchery production will be introduced at this workshop, but details will be the focus of Workshop #2. Specific topics/questions covered in Workshop #1 will include:

  1. Numbers of salmon released from Puget Sound, Washington Coast and Columbia River basin hatcheries and SRKW population size, 1976 - 2021, including each salmon species and chinook salmon stocks that have been identified as primary prey sources.
  2. How has hatchery production of Chinook salmon and other salmon changed since Governor Inslee’s Executive Order 18-02? As of December 31, 2022, how much will hatchery production have increased by 2022 toward the goal of 50 million additional Chinook salmon smolts as described in the Commission’s 2018 Prey Initiative white paper Proposal for Enhanced Hatchery Production of Chinook Salmon to Increase Prey Abundance for Southern Resident Killer Whales? Report production increases separately for Puget Sound and Columbia River areas.
  3. What is the basis for the Commission’s goal of an additional 50 million Chinook smolts? What are current plans, including capital construction budget planning, to meet that goal?
  4. How are the short- and long-term effects of hatchery production being monitored and assessed on wild salmon stocks and other potentially affected ecosystem components? In what areas and for which species does such increased production pose significant risks and what is being done to avoid those risks?
  5. What additional hatchery production has been aimed at other geographic areas proposed in the Commission SRKW prey initiative, beyond Puget Sound dead-end bays and selective Columbia River locations? For such production, who was the sponsoring entity, what was the source of funding, where did releases occur and what was the justification for releases in those areas?
  6. What are the respective roles of the Pacific Fishery Management Council, the Pacific Salmon Treaty, and the Governor’s Orca Prey Initiative in salmon management and the current hatchery expansion plans?