News On 2010 Columbia King, Coho Forecasts

The Oregon and Washington departments of fish and wildlife have issued their preliminary forecasts for fall Chinook back to the Columbia River.

While exact figures have yet to be fleshed out, in a nutshell, we’ll probably see a bigger run of kings in 2010.

As for coho, well, if jack returns are any indication, this year’s looked like a couple seasons in the middle of this decade, and those produced adult runs around half of 2009’s run.

A statement forwarded this afternoon by Joe Hymer, a supervisory biologist with the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, reads:

“Except for the Upriver Bright Stock which was less than predicted, other Columbia River fall Chinook stocks came in as forecasted.  The 2009 Columbia River total adult fall chinook return was forecasted to be 532,900 adults.  This year’s fall chinook jack returns were high (some stocks had record returns) which should lead to larger returns of adults in 2010.  The actual  2009 returns with updated 2010 forecasts should be available in mid February.

“Columbia River coho 2009 returns were slightly less than predicted.  The 2009 forecast for the coho return to the Columbia River mouth (following expected ocean fisheries) was 703,100 adults.  This year’s coho jack return was similar to 2004-2005 when a minimum of 339,900 and 386,600 adults returned to the Columbia in 2005 and 2006, respectively.”

Here’s how managers break it all out:


Lower River Hatchery Stock – LRH

* 2009 return was slightly less than predicted
* Jack return was one of the largest returns since mid-1980s
* 2010 return should be an improvement over the past five years

Lower River Wild Stock – LRW

* 2009 return was similar to predicted – the minimum natural spawn escapement goal is expected to be achieved
* High proportion of jacks in the return
* 2010 return should be similar to recent few years but below average

Bonneville Pool Hatchery Stock – BPH

* 2009 return similar to predicted
* Largest jack return in database (1964) by a factor of two
* 2010 return should be improved over recent few years

Upriver Bright Stock – URB

* 2009 return less than predicted
* Largest return of jacks since mid-1980s
* 2010 return should be similar to recent years

Mid-Columbia Bright Stock – MCB

* 2009 return was as predicted
* Largest jack return on record (1980)
* 2010 return should be above average

Total Columbia River Fall Chinook

* 2009 return was less than the prediction primarily due to less URBs
* 2010 return likely greater than 2009 due to high jack returns

Columbia River Coho

* 2009 return was slightly less than predicted
* Jack return about 26,000 – similar to 2004-2005 jacks

The 2010 spring Chinook forecast could be released on Dec. 11.

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