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U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 1 Effects of Hydropower Operations on Fall Chinook Salmon Spawning Activity - 25038 Geoffrey.

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Presentation on theme: "U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 1 Effects of Hydropower Operations on Fall Chinook Salmon Spawning Activity - 25038 Geoffrey."— Presentation transcript:

1 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 1 Effects of Hydropower Operations on Fall Chinook Salmon Spawning Activity Geoffrey A. McMichael Ecology Group, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Richland, Washington

2 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 2 Rationale (1 of 2) n 2000 NMFS All-H paper: Between 2001 and 2012, restore habitat, acquire riparian corridors, modify flow regimes, reduce non-point pollution, develop improvement plans for all reaches. Beginning in 2001, identify sampling reaches, survey conditions, describe cause- and-effect relationships, identify research needs. n 2000 NPPC F&W Program: Provide conditions in the hydrosystem for adult and juvenile fish that most closely approximate natural physical and biological conditions. Protect and expand mainstem spawning and rearing habitat : The operation of the hydrosystem should protect, and where possible, expand, mainstem spawning and rearing areas. IN instances where this strategy conflicts with flows for juvenile migration or temperature control, the system operators should identify the potential conflict and seek recommendations from state and federal agencies and tribes on how to best meet the two needs.

3 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 3 Rationale (2 of 2) n Mainstem Columbia Subbasin Summary: Assess the effects of hydropower system operations on salmon spawning activity in the Hanford Reach and in the tailrace areas of mainstem dams. This would include an evaluation of whether fall chinook salmon spawn in the Hanford Reach only during the day… Limit spawning to lower elevations on Vernita Bar. Seek an extension of the terms and conditions of the Vernita Bar Agreement beyond its expiration that is concurrent with that of the Priest Rapids Project license.

4 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 4 Objectives 1. Determine the relationship between daylight and fall chinook salmon spawning activity (2002) 2. Determine the effects of hydropower project operations on fall chinook salmon spawning activity ( )

5 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 5 Approach (1 of 4) n Collection and reading of sound files: Use hydrophones/digital media mounted within anchored buoys to record underwater sounds 24 h/day Use statistical algorithms to analyze the sound files to identify time- stamped spawning events (verified by truth data) n For ANCOVA, spawning events as the dependent variable - where independent variable -time of day - will be stratified into categories (e.g., dawn, day, dusk, night) based on incident light measurements – Julian day will be a covariate. A similar approach will be used for 2003 and 2004 to assess the effects of project operations (e.g., discharge timing, patterns, direction of change (rising/falling)).

6 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 6 n How it works Salmonids move rocks and gravel when they construct redds The activity of moving these rocks and gravels produces a unique sound signature Mathematical algorithms can speed the processing of sound files to produce summaries of time-linked spawning activity levels Approach (2 of 4)

7 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 7 Approach (3 of 4)

8 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 8 Approach (4 of 4) n Data processing Sound file data are converted to mathematical vectors Pattern recognition algorithms are used to identify periods of spawning activity/no activity (quantifying the number of digging events/unit time).

9 U.S. Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 9 n Quantitative data on spawning activity vs. daylight n Quantitative data on effects of hydropower operations on spawning activity Providing a tool for system operators to minimize effects of hydropower operations on tailrace spawning populations Data could be transferable to other areas/species –Examples: -Ives Island chum salmon -Lower Snake River fall chinook salmon -Note: $50k/yr of co funding committed by Grant Co. PUD Expected products


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