We propose a workshop to review the current approaches to assessing and modelling salmon survival across freshwater/coastal and marine life history stages and to recommend options that will inform the host of management tools/processes that require consideration of the full life history. We will bring together experts possessing experience with these techniques to share their knowledge in a structured manner. Case studies drawn from Pacific Salmon Treaty stocks that have requisite information will be developed that can be used to test the modelling approach. A Workshop Technical Planning Team will be convened from North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission -International Year of the Salmon partner government agencies, NGO’s and academia to ensure relevance of the work to management and to assist in identifying a complete complement of experts. Experts will include representatives from Pacific Salmon Commission Secretariat staff and Technical Committees (Chinook, Coho, Chum and Sockeye). We will support travel for experts from Asia, Canada, Europe and the U.S. to attend. It will be essential for us to incorporate approaches to understanding freshwater and marine ecosystem status with Indigenous Peoples. Additionally, we will assess the potential for the development of new and emerging technologies and citizen science to augment this work.
Quantifying spatiotemporal change and variability in natural mortality and other population parameters (growth, productivity, etc.) is essential for developing reliable forecasting and assessment models used to manage salmon stocks. Productivity of numerous coho salmon populations in the eastern Pacific has decreased since the 1970’s (Zimmerman et al. 2015), and recent research has identified several factors that may be causing increased mortality in both the marine (Thomas et al. 2017) and freshwater environments (Feist et al. 2017; Ohlberger et al. 2018a). However, there has been minimal effort to incorporate these findings into a rigorous modeling approach that can be used for multiple coho stocks to address fishery, conservation, and ecosystem concerns. We propose to develop spatially explicit hierarchical models for coho salmon stocks, ranging from Oregon to British Columbia. These models will be complete life cycle models, allowing us to evaluate the relative contributions of different factors in space and time.
A better understanding of how drivers such as environmental variation, ecosystem interactions, and fishing pressure have changed over time will also allow us to forecast likely scenarios of future change. By modeling the stocks jointly, and including information about both freshwater and marine drivers of productivity, we aim to address Southern Panel Priority # 3, improving “abundance forecasting and escapement estimation for Coho Management Units (MUs), including better understanding of the impacts of environmental variability and uncertainty.”
This project will develop a research framework to assess the scope, qualitative value, and traditional practices used in food, social, and ceremonial fisheries throughout the region covered by the Pacific Salmon Treaty. In year 1 of 2, the proponents will identify target audiences, develop and test appropriate questionnaires and interview formats, identify key points of contact, create an implementation plan, and otherwise prepare for extensive outreach and analysis in year 2 of 2. Target audiences for the final research output include legislators, appropriators, Native youth leaders, and the general public.
Collection of data by fishermen at sea offers an efficient and cost effective way to provide detailed, timely information to scientists and managers. This proposal is to leverage our experience with SeaTab and subsequent development projects to create an at-sea data entry system using the Earl tablet and test it at sea. If successful this could put the finishing touch on our 2012 efforts to produce an operational data entry system for small boats.