ROSEBURG – Next month, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will begin developing a conservation plan for fall chinook salmon that live in streams south of Port Orford in Curry County. Rogue River basin fall chinook salmon also are included in the planning effort.
The conservation plan will guide management of the nine populations of fall chinook within these areas based on the agency’s Native Fish Conservation Policy.
“A conservation plan is needed for two reasons” said Russ Stauff, local ODFW watershed manager. “First, we’re concerned about the recent low freshwater returns of fall chinook salmon. And in the Rogue basin, we need to develop management strategies for fall chinook to complement those we already have developed for spring chinook.”
The Rogue River Spring Chinook Conservation Plan was adopted by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission in September 2007.
“In developing the fall chinook conservation plan, we’ll look at the current population and identify what we need to do to create a sustainable, healthy population into the future. And we’ll develop monitoring and evaluation plans to track our progress,” Stauff said.
A public advisory committee will be formed to provide input during development of the conservation plan. Committee members will represent a variety of state and federal agencies and conservation and angling groups.
State Representative Wayne Krieger is supportive of the fall chinook conservation plan development and encourages public participation.
“I’ve had conversations with ODFW on concerns I and other legislators have regarding salmon management in Oregon. Moving forward to implement the Native Fish Conservation Policy and having the public on the workgroup to provide input in the fall chinook plan will strengthen salmon management in Oregon,” Krieger said.
ODFW intends to release a draft plan for public review by July 1, 2009.