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Project Summary

Project 2010-076-00 - Characterizing migration and survival for juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin and Lower Granite Dam
Project Number:
2010-076-00
Title:
Characterizing migration and survival for juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin and Lower Granite Dam
Summary:
This project estimates survival and characterizes the migration of juvenile sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin in central Idaho and Lower Granite Dam on the Snake River in Washington State using PIT tags and radio telemetry to determine the magnitude and locations of mortality. Snake River sockeye salmon were listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 1991 due to extremely low adult returns. Part of the recovery strategy includes a safety-net hatchery program utilizing captive broodstock to aid in rebuilding the population. Over the previous 16-years, hatchery production of Snake River sockeye salmon has increased steadily with current production levels between 200,000 and 300,000 juveniles annually.

Estimated survival between releases into the upper Salmon River basin and Lower Granite Dam for PIT tagged juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon in the spring has been highly variable between release locations, rearing strategies, origin, and years (0.114 to 0.776). Determining where and why mortality is occurring is a critical element towards successful rebuilding and recovery of endangered Snake River sockeye salmon. We propose to utilize PIT tags and radio telemetry to characterize the migration and estimate survival for juvenile sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin in central Idaho and Lower Granite Dam on the Snake River in Washington State. This projected is anticipated to be conducted each year from 2011 through 2014 in order to capture the annual variability between environmental conditions and brood years. Information gained from this study will directly contribute to actions that will play an important part in recovery of ESA-listed Snake River sockeye salmon by
examining key uncertainties and filling data gaps. Determining the causes of mortality will provide important direction to inform management actions to optimize survival for sockeye salmon.
Proposer:
Proponent Orgs:
Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) (Govt - State)
Starting FY:
2011
Ending FY:
2016
Stage:
Area:
Province Subbasin %
Upper Snake Snake Headwaters 100.00%
Purpose:
Predation
Emphasis:
RM and E
Focal Species:
Chinook - Snake River Spring/Summer ESU
Sockeye - Snake River ESU
Steelhead - Snake River DPS
Trout, Bull
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 100.0%   Resident: 0.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
Special:
None

Description: Page: 9 Figure 1: Map of study area showing (in blue) the migratory path of Snake River sockeye salmon from release near the Redfish Lake Creek Trap to Lower Granite Dam. Black dots show locations of fixed-site radio telemetry monitoring receivers. Arrows show locations of smolt monitoring traps and bars indicate lower Snake River dams.

Project: 2010-076-00

Document: P124866

Dimensions: 1114 x 854


Summary of Budgets

To view all expenditures for all fiscal years, click "Project Exp. by FY"

To see more detailed project budget information, please visit the "Project Budget" page

No Decided Budget Transfers

Pending Budget Decision?  No


Actual Project Cost Share

Current Fiscal Year — 2021
Cost Share Partner Total Proposed Contribution Total Confirmed Contribution
There are no project cost share contributions to show.
Previous Fiscal Years
Fiscal Year Total Contributions % of Budget
2016
2015
2014 $5,000 1%
2013 $5,000 1%
2012 $97,785 9%
2011 $96,742 9%

Contracts

The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, Complete, History, Issued.
* "Total Contracted Amount" column includes contracted amount from both capital and expense components of the contract.
Expense Contracts:
Number Contractor Name Title Status Total Contracted Amount Dates
BPA-005796 Bonneville Power Administration PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Active $1,377 10/1/2010 - 9/30/2011
BPA-006390 Bonneville Power Administration PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Active $7,081 10/1/2011 - 9/30/2012
BPA-006954 Bonneville Power Administration PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Active $18,896 10/1/2012 - 9/30/2013
BPA-007749 Bonneville Power Administration PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Active $5,559 10/1/2013 - 9/30/2014



Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):11
Completed:7
On time:7
Status Reports
Completed:40
On time:36
Avg Days Early:1

Earliest Subsequent           Accepted Count of Contract Deliverables
Contract Contract(s) Title Contractor Start End Status Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
BPA-005796 PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Bonneville Power Administration 10/2010 10/2010 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
51136 56263, 60321, 64116, 68370 2010-076-00 EXP IDFG - SNAKE R JUV SOCKEYE MIGRATION/SURV STUDIES Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) 03/2011 03/2011 Closed 20 30 0 0 2 32 93.75% 0
46273 REL 21 46273 REL 42, 46273 REL 59, 46273 REL 78, 46273 REL 99 2010-076-00 EXP NOAA- SNAKE R SOCKEYE MIGRATION/SURV STUDIES National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 03/2011 03/2011 Closed 20 31 0 0 2 33 93.94% 0
BPA-006390 PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Bonneville Power Administration 10/2011 10/2011 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-006954 PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Bonneville Power Administration 10/2012 10/2012 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-007749 PIT Tags - SR Sockeye Studies Bonneville Power Administration 10/2013 10/2013 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Project Totals 40 61 0 0 4 65 93.85% 0


The table content is updated frequently and thus contains more recent information than what was in the original proposal reviewed by ISRP and Council.

Review: RME / AP Category Review

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2010-076-00-NPCC-20101202
Project: 2010-076-00 - Characterizing migration and survival for juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin and Lower Granite Dam
Review: RME / AP Category Review
Proposal: RMECAT-2010-076-00
Proposal State: Pending BPA Response
Approved Date: 6/10/2011
Recommendation: Fund (In Part)
Comments: Implement objectives 1 and 2 through FY 2016. See presumptive path discussion in Programmatic Recommendation no. 10.
Conditions:
Council Condition #1 Programmatic Issue: RMECAT #10 PIT tags and related tags—See presumptive path discussion

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2010-076-00-ISRP-20101015
Project: 2010-076-00 - Characterizing migration and survival for juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon between the upper Salmon River basin and Lower Granite Dam
Review: RME / AP Category Review
Proposal Number: RMECAT-2010-076-00
Completed Date: 12/17/2010
Final Round ISRP Date: 12/17/2010
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria - In Part
Final Round ISRP Comment:
The ISRP finds that objectives 1 and 2 meet scientific review criteria, but objective 3 does not meet criteria for the reasons described below.

Smolt travel time and survival estimates from this study will contribute to filling data gaps identified in the Adaptive Management Implementation Plan and could play an important part in recovery of ESA-listed Snake River sockeye salmon by increasing understanding of juvenile sockeye salmon migrations across multiple years. Relationships between the proposed work and the AMIP, 2008 BiOp, MERR, and several specific Fish and Wildlife Program recommendations are described in the proposal.

Objectives for the PIT-tagging and radio-tagging portions of the study (Objectives 1 and 2) are well defined. Monitoring of radio-tagged fish at various locations along the migration route will allow estimation of survival rates over different river reaches. Comparison of release-to-Lower Granite Dam survival rates for radio-tagged and PIT-tagged fish will provide a test for differential tagging effects. This project should be ranked as high priority, because little is known of the migration behavior and survival rates of juvenile sockeye in the basin. A few suggestions for further development of the study plan are:

1) The rationale for desired precision values leading to a target sample size of 400 radio-tagged fish should be presented. Sample size adequacy for investigation of fish size, origin, and release location as covariates in the travel time and survival analyses should be investigated.

2) The sampling plan proposes survival estimates for 25 contiguous river reaches between release points and Lower Granite Dam. This may be overly ambitious, particularly for the first year of the study. Are there important questions that can be answered only at a high level of resolution? Anecdotal observations suggest that predation mortality may be high in the first stage of the migration, soon after the smolts are released. If so, might it be most efficient for the study to initially use fewer and longer reaches, emphasizing study of the effects of alternative smolt release strategies on survival in the uppermost reach?

In contrast to Objectives 1 and 2, Objective 3 – to characterize the migratory behavior of juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon using otolith microchemistry – was not well explained or justified. The intent of this objective is unclear, except for a statement (p. 6) that “we will reconstruct downstream migration by using chemical signatures reconstructed across otoliths...” The proposed sample sizes for this work are very small, and would rely on collection of dead fish (not a representative sample of migrating fish) from dam bypass systems. Otolith microchemistry methods have been shown capable of identifying fish that have reared for some period of time in different watersheds, but juvenile sockeye migrate rapidly downstream from the upper Salmon River basin in large schools through waters of mixed origin. The ability of otolith microchemistry to differentiate between the migration histories of individual fish is, in this situation, problematic. It appears that the radio-tagging study would produce the desired information on travel times through different reaches more directly and with greater precision than the otolith microchemistry work. The ISRP’s recommendation is to not pursue the otolith microchemistry work at this time.
First Round ISRP Date: 10/18/2010
First Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria - In Part
First Round ISRP Comment:
The ISRP finds that objectives 1 and 2 meet scientific review criteria, but objective 3 does not meet criteria for the reasons described below.

Smolt travel time and survival estimates from this study will contribute to filling data gaps identified in the Adaptive Management Implementation Plan and could play an important part in recovery of ESA-listed Snake River sockeye salmon by increasing understanding of juvenile sockeye salmon migrations across multiple years. Relationships between the proposed work and the AMIP, 2008 BiOp, MERR, and several specific Fish and Wildlife Program recommendations are described in the proposal.

Objectives for the PIT-tagging and radio-tagging portions of the study (Objectives 1 and 2) are well defined. Monitoring of radio-tagged fish at various locations along the migration route will allow estimation of survival rates over different river reaches. Comparison of release-to-Lower Granite Dam survival rates for radio-tagged and PIT-tagged fish will provide a test for differential tagging effects. This project should be ranked as high priority, because little is known of the migration behavior and survival rates of juvenile sockeye in the basin. A few suggestions for further development of the study plan are:

1) The rationale for desired precision values leading to a target sample size of 400 radio-tagged fish should be presented. Sample size adequacy for investigation of fish size, origin, and release location as covariates in the travel time and survival analyses should be investigated.

2) The sampling plan proposes survival estimates for 25 contiguous river reaches between release points and Lower Granite Dam. This may be overly ambitious, particularly for the first year of the study. Are there important questions that can be answered only at a high level of resolution? Anecdotal observations suggest that predation mortality may be high in the first stage of the migration, soon after the smolts are released. If so, might it be most efficient for the study to initially use fewer and longer reaches, emphasizing study of the effects of alternative smolt release strategies on survival in the uppermost reach?

In contrast to Objectives 1 and 2, Objective 3 – to characterize the migratory behavior of juvenile Snake River sockeye salmon using otolith microchemistry – was not well explained or justified. The intent of this objective is unclear, except for a statement (p. 6) that “we will reconstruct downstream migration by using chemical signatures reconstructed across otoliths...” The proposed sample sizes for this work are very small, and would rely on collection of dead fish (not a representative sample of migrating fish) from dam bypass systems. Otolith microchemistry methods have been shown capable of identifying fish that have reared for some period of time in different watersheds, but juvenile sockeye migrate rapidly downstream from the upper Salmon River basin in large schools through waters of mixed origin. The ability of otolith microchemistry to differentiate between the migration histories of individual fish is, in this situation, problematic. It appears that the radio-tagging study would produce the desired information on travel times through different reaches more directly and with greater precision than the otolith microchemistry work. The ISRP’s recommendation is to not pursue the otolith microchemistry work at this time.
Documentation Links:

2008 FCRPS BiOp Workgroup Assessment

Assessment Number: 2010-076-00-BIOP-20101105
Project Number: 2010-076-00
Review: RME / AP Category Review
Proposal Number: RMECAT-2010-076-00
Completed Date: None
2008 FCRPS BiOp Workgroup Rating: Response Requested
Comments: BiOp Workgroup Comments: For compliance with RPA 50.7: This RPA action is for hatchery fish marking only. Confirm that the scope of work proposed is for 100% marking of fish (visible or non visible) from the hatchery supported. If this project is marking fish for the hatchery, please specify the hatchery name and populations affected. If marking is conducted under another project or program, please let us know the name of that project/program.

Please identify:
1. Why your data is ""not electronically available""; and
2. What data sets will not be ""electronically available"" for various deliverables. Please specify the deliverable that is not electronically available. (Note a data set includes the raw data collected and additional data on analysis). For example if there is a deliverable for population adult abundance or habitat, we expect your raw and synthesized data to be made available electronically.
- Your response may help BPA identify funding needs for data repositories or identify an existing data warehouse that your data could be stored.


The BiOp RM&E Workgroups made the following determinations regarding the proposal's ability or need to support BiOp Research, Monitoring and Evaluation (RME) RPAs. If you have questions regarding these RPA association conclusions, please contact your BPA COTR and they will help clarify, or they will arrange further discussion with the appropriate RM&E Workgroup Leads. BiOp RPA associations for the proposed work are: (52.5 50.7 63.1 63.2 70.4)
All Questionable RPA Associations (50.7) and
All Deleted RPA Associations ( 52.5 54.7 54.8 )
Proponent Response:

Fish utilized for this study will be produced and marked under project #2007-402-00. We will utlize fish marked with ad-clips and PIT tags from that project to conduct the survival estimates associated with this project during FY11. From FY12-FY14 we have requested PIT tags to mark additional hatchery and natural origin fish to estimate survival.

1. This data will be made available electronically. The data will be available upon request from the sponsor directly or through the PTAGIS database.

2. All data collected will be made available. Survival estimates will be produced and can be queried through the FIsh Passage Center or through DART and the raw data collected will be available the PTAGIS. 


Project Relationships: None

Name Role Organization
Mike Peterson Project Lead Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG)
Kristi Van Leuven (Inactive) Administrative Contact Bonneville Power Administration
Jonathan McCloud (Inactive) Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration
Gordon Axel Technical Contact National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Christine Kozfkay Supervisor Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG)
Russell Scranton Project SME Bonneville Power Administration