At the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s August 19, 2013 request, the ISRP reviewed the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation’s (CTUIR) responses to the ISRP’s recent review of the Walla Walla Spring Chinook Master Plan 2013 (ISRP 2013-10; also see ISRP 2010-17 and ISRP 2008- 14). This is a Step 1 review in the Council’s Three Step Review Process. Step 1 is the feasibility stage, and all major components and elements of a project should be identified.
As described in the Master Plan, the goals of the CTUIR for Walla Walla Basin spring Chinook are to provide treaty and non-treaty fisheries in the basin and to restore natural spawning. The purpose of the proposed hatchery is to contribute to harvest and natural spawning in the near term. This is to be done in a manner consistent with the longer-term goal of re-establishing a self-sustaining, naturally spawning population through an “all-H” approach that includes hatchery production and improvements in habitat and fish passage. The program’s design is proposed to end the current dependence on imported broodstock, improve survival through local adaptation, and meet harvest and natural spawning objectives. Implementation is proposed to occur in three phases, moving from one phase to another based on the performance of hatchery and naturally spawning fish in the South Fork Walla Walla River, Touchet River, and Mill Creek.
This review focuses on the Tribes’ responses to a recent review by the ISRP (ISRP 2013-10), which specifically requested clarification of 1) the production levels and productivity for each of the three phases, 2) the anticipated duration of the two initial phases, and 3) the precedence of the decision rules and guidelines that will be used to transition from one phase to the next.
The ISRP found that as augmented by the response and underlying analyses the Tribes’ master plan submittal meets scientific review criteria for Step 1. See the review memo for full details.