Most of California’s salmon and trout swimming to extinction says report

SACRAMENTO
May 16, 2017 12:42pm
Comment Print Email

•  Almost all extinct by 2115 if nothing is done

•  “This report should rightly be considered an alarm bell”


California’s native fish species likely to be extinct within the next five decades has nearly tripled, from 5 to 14 species and after five years of historic drought, 81 percent of the remaining 31 species are worse off today than they were a decade ago, according to a new report released Tuesday by fish and watershed advocacy group California Trout and the University of California, Davis, Center for Watershed Sciences.

“The health of our native fish is a reflection of the health of our rivers and streams,” says Curtis Knight, executive director of CalTrout. “Declining fish populations indicate degraded waters, which threaten the health and economic well-being of all Californians.”

If present trends continue, 74 percent of California’s native salmon, steelhead, and trout species are likely to be extinct in 100 years, the researchers predict.

In the coming decades, the Central California Coast coho salmon and the Northern California Coast summer steelhead in particular face a high risk of extinction, the report says.

There are eleven other kinds of native salmon, steelhead, and trout in the region: Chum salmon, California Coast Chinook, Upper Klamath-Trinity Rivers spring Chinook, Upper Klamath-Trinity Rivers fall Chinook, Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast fall Chinook, Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast Coho, pink salmon, Northern California Coast winter steelhead, Klamath Mountain Province winter steelhead, Klamath Mountain Province summer steelhead, and Coastal cutthroat trout.

Of these eleven, five are likely to be extinct in the next 50 years if present trends continue.

“This report should rightly be considered an alarm bell, but it should also be seen as a roadmap for how we can correct course to better support native aquatic species,” says the report’s lead author Peter Moyle, distinguished professor emeritus in the Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology and associate director of the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences,

“Thanks to ongoing scientific research, we now know what to do – and where – to improve the plight of native fish,” he says.

The report includes an analysis of key threats to the survival of each species, starting with the overarching threat of climate change, which is likely to reduce the availability of cold water habitat that salmon, steelhead, and trout all depend on for survival. It also highlights various other human-induced threats, such as dams, agriculture, estuary alteration, urbanization, and transportation.

In the Central Valley, improving prospects for imperiled fish like the Sacramento winter-run Chinook salmon includes providing opportunities for juveniles to access floodplain-like habitat (on fallow farm fields and other designated floodways), taking steps to prevent returning adults from accidentally straying into agricultural drainage canals, and identifying strategic opportunities to improve conditions for the fish through cooperative approaches like the Central Valley Salmon Partnership.

“We have developed scientifically proven opportunities to improve the prospects of endangered fish species like winter-run Chinook salmon,” says Jacob Katz, CalTrout senior scientist in the Central California region. “The trick is to put our plans into action as quickly as possible so that we return these native species to self-sustaining populations.”

The report notes that improving salmonid status throughout California requires investing in productive habitats that promote growth, survival, and diversity. CalTrout has developed an action plan to return the state’s salmon, steelhead, and trout to resilience to help many of these species thrive.

--Suggested Solutions

To reverse the trend toward extinction, the report suggests prioritizing protection and restoration efforts in three general areas:

• Protecting the most productive river ecosystems remaining in California, such as the Smith and Eel Rivers, must be a priority. These strongholds, among others, have the capacity to support diversity and abundance because they retain high quality habitat and are not heavily influenced by hatcheries, supporting the persistence of wild fish.

• Increasing focus on source waters will keep more water in streams and reduce stress on fish during drought, buffering the effects of climate change. Sierra meadow restoration, springs protection and progressive groundwater management all contribute to this effort.

• Restoring function to once productive – but now highly altered – habitats can greatly improve rearing conditions for juvenile fish, especially floodplains, coastal lagoons, estuaries, and spring-fed rivers.

Additionally, the report identifies three science-based strategies to support a return to abundance for California’s native salmonids:

• First, focus on opportunities to mimic natural processes within altered landscapes. For example, CalTrout has demonstrated that off-season farmland can mimic traditional floodplains and support rapid growth of juvenile salmon.

• Second, prioritize improving fish passage to historical spawning and rearing grounds that have been cut off over time.

• Last, pursue strategies that increase genetic diversity of wild fish.

“We know we are not going to turn back the clock to a time before rivers were dammed or otherwise altered for human benefit,” Mr. Knight says. “Using the best available science, we can make landscape-level changes that will allow both people and fish to thrive in California.”

Drilldown

» For the full report::  www.caltrout.org/sos/

Comment Print Email










  • How to compete against Wal-Mart
  • Stockton mom turns a need into a business
  • The entrepreneur is in
  • Writing her own success story
  • Growing a small business the family way
  • The future pencils positive for this company
  • Niche marketing -- Italian style
  • Sipping success with niche marketing
  • Roasting a business out of his passion
  • Success as an independent consultant takes more than expertise
  • Avoiding the traps of employee law violations
  • Cracking the voice-over market
  • The American Dream realized, one package at a time
  • Female winemaker plunges into business
  • A new take on nurse education
  • Family sees moving business success
  • STEM thrives in pockets of education innovation
  • STEM goes solar in Stockton
  • Quick! There’s a robot in my pool
  • Retiring seniors can mean new business
  • Predawn biotech class trains next generation of science workers
  • Staying ahead of the competition the old fashioned way
  • Central Valley sees mismatch between high-tech jobs and job seekers
  • STEM starts young
  • Get ready – the future is here now
  • STEM Education: Growing the Valley's Future
  • They’re low power in wattage only, not ideas
  • Thinking success spawns Successful Thinkers
  • Small business success can mean finding the right niche
  • This franchise has real muscle behind it
  • Getting the scoop on small business success
  • Reshoring could rebuild America's manufacturing
  • Marketing that’s deliberately anchored to the past
  • Guitar artist plays his way to success
  • Paralysis no handicap for this entrepreneur
  • Boost sales with better communication
  • Making sandwiches sexy with a franchise
  • Going solar without spending a lot of money
  • They’re cute and cuddly. But are they a business?
  • Opportunity sails forth in the Delta
  • How bad etiquette on the job could kill your career
  • Growing their way out of hunger and poverty
  • Finding small business success from floor to ceiling
  • Why he’s public enemy #1 – for gophers
  • Running a home-based business successfully
  • Your boss needs a vacation – really
  • Couple makes transition from big corporations to small business
  • Carving a small business niche with a better idea
  • Calm is the goal of computer service and education franchisor
  • Developer squeezing new life into downtown with juice franchise
  • Signs of a recovering economy
  • How to keep a family business in the family
  • Ford dealership expands despite the Great Recession
  • Utility Telephone connects with customer service
  • Crowdfunding basics
  • The roar from crowdfunding is getting louder
  • California water wars’ bulldog
  • Water wars heat up in California
  • Helping businesses grow with a stronger STEM
  • How to retain your best employees
  • Small business runs success up the pole
  • Winery expands in Lodi
  • Lodi wineries tapping into growing Chinese market
  • Has the jobs picture brightened for the Valley for 2012?
  • The right education will be needed for 21st Century jobs
  • Where new jobs for San Joaquin will come from
  • Developing jobs for San Joaquin – Part 2
  • Developing jobs for San Joaquin
  • Fruits of his labor
  • Helping grow food security in the Valley of plenty
  • Doing a business turnaround despite the recession
  • Keeping customers loyal helps build her business
  • Expo exposes businesses to utility contracting ideas
  • Drink mix maker taps expertise to blend success
  • Entrepreneur finds success in a basket
  • Tips for catching resume fraud
  • There’s no checking out for this small business owner
  • Entrepreneurs take Valley sports play-by-play to the world
  • Starting a winery from scratch
  • Job hunting tips for the long-term unemployed
  • In the Central Valley, opera isn’t always the Grand Ole Opry
  • Branding ideas for small businesses
  • The ump’s not blind, but the players are
  • Finding success by tapping your brain in a new way - Part Two
  • Finding success by tapping your brain in a new way
  • Machines talking to machines is the future
  • Getting involved in the fight against AIDS
  • Franchised divorce says it’s a better way
  • Small business owner is brewing a success story
  • To beat the Great Recession, they’ve expanded
  • Taking a swing at strokes
  • Alert your taste buds – here comes Taste of San Joaquin
  • This franchise has real muscle behind it
  • Passion for his city drives him
  • Vicente Fox speaks out on U.S.-Mexico relations
  • Give your support staff recognition and reap top performance
  • Central Valley baker gets top honors for Royal Wedding pie
  • Asparagus Festival ends on high note
  • Stockton close to annual ‘tipping’ point
  • Framing small business success
  • Small business sees Affordable Care Act helping its bottom line
  • What you eat – and when – helps local restaurants
  • Coping with the aftermath of foreclosure
  • How to raise charming children
  • Central Valley grad school goes all-iPads
  • Solution to Delta water wars voiced
  • Making sure your personal bottom line is covered
  • Small California winemaker is all family
  • Small winery relies on family and innovation to compete
  • Central Valley company says it has a better way to store solar power
  • What’s wrong -- and right -- about local TV news
  • What planning means to small business success
  • Making the leap to small business
  • Out of work at middle age? Experts offer advice
  • Small business marketing, one article at a time
  • Congress on your corner as it’s supposed to be
  • Central Valley city’s heritage rediscovered
  • Central Valley school is building students’ foundations
  • Job tips from the expert
  • Long-term jobless worker re-invents himself
  • Building a new power plant means jobs for Central Valley
  • Sacramento reaches for the stars with new science center
  • Lodi Chamber opens China’s doors to small business
  • Writing books for fun – and sometimes profit
  • Black Friday shopping? How to protect yourself from scams
  • California winemakers can find added rewards overseas
  • Wine makers tap overseas markets from Lodi
  • A new revenue stream for Central Valley small businesses
  • Food bank seeks more business support
  • Tips for finding a job in the Great Recession
  • State may solve some of its prison woes with new Stockton facility
  • A solution to underwater mortgages
  • Should public libraries be managed by private firms?
  • Central Valley moves ahead with critical water project
  • Dee Dee Myers and the increasing impact of women on small business
  • How women are growing their small businesses
  • A market with a mission
  • Retailer 'paints' solutions to cash flow challenge
  • An answer for the unemployed – return to school
  • A ‘golden’ small business success story
  • Central Valley winegrapes blessed
  • Rubbing out the recession with a franchise
  • Surviving the recession as a small business
  • It’s personal, union says of Stockton fire cuts
  • How old it too old to start a new business?
  • They've found the recipe for small business success
  • MBA students help revive Central Valley farmers market
  • Classic wooden yachts anchor in Stockton for weekend
  • Foreclosures, short sales – a bank president comments
  • The strength of family helps this small business compete
  • Festival spears success in Central Valley
  • Social media helps keep family business prospering
  • Central Valley students get training in ‘green’ futures
  • Knives readied as Valley cities slash services
  • Central Valley jobless picture still grim
  • Delta residents told to ready for water war
  • Opportunities outlined for Central Valley small businesses
  • Rewiring your brain for success
  • Central Valley no longer ‘shell shocked’ by recession
  • To fix California’s government, look to London
  • Taking your sales pitch to the next level