This project’s intent is to address how hatchery management, in concert with harvest and habitat management can best be applied over time to maintain a trajectory toward success. Here, “best” means progress toward recovery of the natural population being maximized while achieving enhancement production objectives.
The objective is to undertake a one-time set of activities to support the development and implementation of analytical tools designed to allow for improved Chinook hatchery program design and operation in British Columbia. The project will build on recent science and policy work in both Canada and the US HSRG process to support Chinook hatchery planning work so that it may better meet managers and stakeholders harvest and conservation goals.
Hatchery effectiveness and wild stock interactions will be directly evaluated and will support integrated planning to improve the cost-benefit return, both in terms of harvest value as well as minimizing negative wild stock interactions. Improvement to the status of wild WCVI Chinook via conservation hatchery intervention can potentially lead to increased harvest availability in boundary fisheries. In addition, production hatcheries that are determined through the use of the All-Hatchery Analyzer and In-Season Implementation Tool (AHA-ISIT) to be underutilized with respect to potential contribution of hatchery Chinook to boundary and domestic fisheries will be reviewed for potential increases in production. Improved information and understanding of potential harvestable hatchery surpluses will be able to leverage significant benefits with minimal resource inputs, as hatchery Chinook that are already being produced may be made available for harvest.
As the AHA-ISIT Life Cycle Model allows for modelling of scenarios for rebuilding that include habitat productivity parameters in conjunction with harvest and hatchery policy, effective implementation of this project and subsequent evaluation of current and previous hatchery programs will be able to identify opportunities for habitat restoration work where it may be a limiting factor for wild population abundance.