• Projects
  • Movement and Survival of Juvenile Salmonids in Small Streams

Breadcrumb

Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC) Fish Ecology FE - Watershed

Information

Project
Strait of Juan de Fuca IMW
Title
Movement and Survival of Juvenile Salmonids in Small Streams
Description
The Strait of Juan de Fuca Intensively Monitored Watershed (IMW) began in 2004 to test the watershed-scale response of steelhead and coho salmon to watershed restoration. The Strait IMW includes two treatment watersheds (East Twin River and Deep Creek) and one control watershed (West Twin River). Restoration treatments included wood placement, road and culvert removal, floodplain connection, and riparian planting. Monitoring of physical habitat as well as coho salmon and steelhead parr densities began in 2004 using the EPA’s EMAP site selection and sampling protocols. Smolt and adult monitoring predates the IMW program and began as early as 1998 in some watersheds. Several major results have come from the IMW work on the Strait of Juan de Fuca. First relative survival increases at the juvenile life stage due to restoration actions have consistently occurred for over five years. Second, both coho salmon and steelhead have shown multiple life history types, some of which have only been documented in select watersheds across the Pacific Rim, that result in differences in survivorship and contribution to the overall returning adult populations.Understanding and quantifying the contribution of each life history type to overall adult returns gives us a better understanding of how specific restorative actions affect salmon populations.Specifically we are seeing a general increase in the proportion of yearling coho salmon migrants over time in all three watersheds since 2010. The increasing trend was not paired with an increase in adult coho salmon returns given that adult returns have either remained relatively flat or declined slightly since 2005 due to other factors. Nevertheless, potentially increasing fish size through restoration actions, coupled with larger fish that are more likely to remain in the stream and become yearling migrants could lead to potentially higher return rates for adults in the future. Lastly we have documented large-scale changes in stream habitat condition due to the over two decades of stream habitat restoration. Specifically in over 50% of the 6.0 kilometers that had been treated in one of the watersheds, Deep Creek, we observed increased wood loadings, more channel spanning log jams, deeper and more frequent pools, a reduction in particle size distribution, increased sediment storage, reduced stream width, vegetation encroachment in the riparian zone, and increased development and maintenance of floodplain channels. The largest geomorphic changes occurred in the lower 2.0 kilometers of Deep Creek, in part, due to wood being recruited, mobilized and routed downstream. These findings imply the cumulative habitat restoration actions and the associated changes to stream habitat conditions are identifiable through long-term monitoring. It also suggests that long-term stream restoration actions that incorporate natural processes such as the recruitment of wood over time, can have lasting, positive effects to stream habitat conditions. Moving forward, we plan to continue work focused on how survival changes at the juvenile life stage and life history diversity quantitatively affects salmon populations.

Research Themes

Ecosystem approach to improve management of marine resources
The California Current Large Marine Ecosystem, Puget Sound and the Columbia River Basin are home to a wide range of freshwater and marine resources that provide a wealth of ecosystem goods and services. Ensuring the resiliency and productivity of the California Current and Pacific Northwest ecosystems requires an integrated understanding of their structure, function, and vulnerability to increased human population growth in coastal communities and competing uses of coastal waterways and oceans. The NWFSC‘s approach to understanding these large ecosystems integrates studies across ecosystems (terrestrial, freshwater, and marine) and scientific disciplines to inform resource managers responsible for conserving marine resources.

Research Foci

Describe the interaction between human activities, particularly harvest of marine resources, and ecosystem function
Humans are an integral component of ecosystems. These ecosystems provide goods and services such as fish and seafood harvests, but these activities and others such as habitat alteration, pollution, and ocean acidification, can have strong impacts. Understanding the nature of these interactions will require observational and experimental studies aimed at identifying ecosystem-level responses to human activities, both individually and cumulatively, as well as human responses to ecosystem changes. Modeling spatial choices for harvesting and other human activities that are affected by ecosystem integrity, for example, can support a better understanding of the effects of ecosystembased management actions.

Keywords

IMW
Intensely monitored watershed
Oncorhynchus kisutch
coho
Oncorhynchus mykiss
steelhead
PIT tag
Passive Integrated Transponder tags
movement
movement
salmon
all salmonids
survival
Survival

Products

Advances in the population ecology of stream salmonids International Symposium, Gerona, Spain 2015.
-
Bennett, T. R., P. Roni, K. Denton, M. McHenry, and R. Moses. 2015. Nomads no more: early juvenile Coho Salmon migrants contribute to the adult return. Ecology of Freshwater Fish 24(2): pp.264–275. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/eff.12144/epdf
-
Bennett, T., R. Wissmar, and P. Roni. 2011. Fall and spring emigration timing of juvenile coho salmon from East Twin River, Washington. Northwest Science 85:562–570. http://www.bioone.org/doi/abs/10.3955/046.085.0406
-
Ehinger, W. J., J. Hall, M. McHenry, K. Hanson, T. Bennett, M. Liermann, G. Pess, K. Krueger. 2016. Strait of Juan de Fuca IMW Annual Assessment. Prepared for the Salmon Funding Recovery Board’s Monitoring Panel. Olympia, WA.
-
Hall, J. E., P. Roni, T. Bennett, J. McMillan, K. Hanson, G. Pess, R. Moses, M. McHenry, and W. Ehinger. 2015. Life history diversity of steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in two coastal Washington watersheds. 2015. American Fisheries Society, Portland, OR, August 17, 2015.
-
Hall, J., M. McHenry, W. Ehinger, T. Bennett, K. Hanson, M. Liermann and G. Pess. 2018. Strait of Juan de Fuca Intensively Monitored Watersheds. 2017 Synthesis Report. Prepared for the Salmon Recovery Funding Board
-
Hall, J., P. Roni, T. Bennett, J. McMillan, K. Hanson, R. Moses, M. McHenry, G. Pess, and W. Ehinger. 2016. Life history diversity of steelhead in two coastal Washington watersheds. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 145 (5):990–1005. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00028487.2016.1194893
-
McHenry, M., M. Liermann, G. Pess, W. Ehinger, K. Hanson and T. Bennett. 2021. Strait of Juan de Fuca Intensively Monitored Watersheds 2020 Annual Report. Prepared for the Salmon Recovery Funding Board.
-
NOPLE (North Olympic Lead Entity for Salmon) 2013.
-
Northwest Fisheries Science Center Watershed Program Open House 2010, 2013, 2015, 2017.
Northwest Fisheries Science Center Watershed Program Open House 2010, 2013, 2015, 2017.
Pess, G., McHenry, M., W. Ehinger, T. Bennett, K. Hanson and M. Liermann. 2020. Strait of Juan de Fuca Intensively Monitored Watersheds 2019 Annual Report. Prepared for the Salmon Recovery Funding Board
-
Roni, P., T. R. Bennett, R. Holland, G. R. Pess, K. M. Hanson, R. Moses, M. McHenry, W. Ehinger, and J. Walter. 2012. Factors affecting migration timing, growth, and survival of juvenile Coho Salmon in two coastal Washington watersheds. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 141:890–906. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00028487.2012.675895
-
Strait of Juan de Fuca Intensively Monitored Watershed Database
https://www.webapps.nwfsc.noaa.gov/apex/f?p=274:1:25521899047110:::::
Sylvander, B., R. Kang, R. Davidson, R. Marsicek, P. Roni, K. Hanson and T. Bennett. Data Management for an Intensively Monitored Watershed. Presented at the 2014 NWFSC Science Symposium and in 2015 at the AFS Symposium.
-

Taxa

Species Oncorhynchus kisutch
Coho salmon, silver salmon
Species Oncorhynchus mykiss
rainbow trout, steelhead trout, syeelhead trout

People

Gabriel Brooks
Staff
George Pess
Supervisor
George Pess
Supervisor
Karrie Hanson
Staff
Karrie Hanson
Staff
Martin Liermann
Staff
Martin Liermann
Staff
Morgan Bond
Staff
Steve Corbett
Staff
Todd Bennett
Principal Investigator
Todd Bennett
Principal Investigator