Anthropology Research Proposal: On Chinook Salmon

Replenishing Major Food Sources of Native Alaskan Tribes: Managing Yukon River Chinook Salmon Populations

Megan Lorino, UAF Wildlife Biology and Conservation Studies

 

Abstract

Populations of Chinook Salmon have been dwindling in the Yukon River for many years and have been monitored closely by scientists with the goal of bringing healthy populations back. Native Alaskan tribes have always relied heavily on these salmon populations as a major food source. The United States and Canada came to an agreement in 2016 known as the Yukon River Salmon Agreement; the goal of this agreement was to begin working on restoring healthy salmon populations which end up being harvested in both Canada and the United States. Climate Central reported that in 2014 Chinook Salmon populations in the Yukon River dropped so low that there was a hold put on subsistence fishing. Native Alaskans rely heavily on these salmon populations for subsistence in their tribes. “Subsistence salmon fishing is at the core of many residents’ livelihood; integrating fish wheels, dip netting and fish smoking into many Alaskans’ everyday life. Salmon are more than food or just fish – they are a way of life to many Alaskans (Beutler, 2016).” I examine possible solutions for preserving and rebuilding salmon populations in the Yukon River with the goal of replenishing this important food source for Native Alaskan tribes which still rely on harvesting wild resources in order to survive. Environmental factors such as sea ice temperature and salt concentrations will need to continue being monitored to determine where fisheries management can assist in spawning and abundance of this critical food source. 

 

References Cited

Alaska Department of Fish and Game, 2019. 2019 Yukon River Salmon Fisheries Outlook. http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/applications/dcfnewsrelease/1029815354.pdf

 

Alaska Department of Fish and Game, n.d. Subsistence in Alaska. Overview: Definition, Responsibilities and Management. https://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=subsistence.definition

 

Beutler, H. 2016. Threat to Salmon Imperils Alaska’s Culture. Climate Central. https://www.climatecentral.org/news/when-salmon-disappear-alaskan-culture-may-follow-20522

 

Burke, J. 2012. Alaska Natives rally for restored aboriginal hunting, fishing rights. Anchorage Daily News. https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/article/alaska-natives-rally-restored-aboriginal-hunting-fishing-rights/2012/10/18/

 

Gautier, A. 2019. Running against time: Forecasting Chinook salmon runs on the Yukon River. NSIDC Highlights. National Snow & Ice Data Center. https://nsidc.org/nsidc-highlights/2019/08/running-against-time-forecasting-chinook-salmon-runs-yukon-river

 

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. 2002. U.S. and Canada Sign Historic Yukon River Salmon Agreement. News Releases. https://www.fws.gov/news/ShowNews.cfm?ref=us-and-canada-sign-historic-yukon-river-salmon-agreement&_ID=2592

 

Density and population viability of coastal marten: a rare and geographically isolated small carnivore

“Pacific martens (Martes caurina humboldtensis) in coastal forests of Oregon and northern California in the United States are rare and geographically isolated, prompting a petition for listing under the Endangered Species Act. If listed, regulations have the potential to influence land-use decisions on public and private lands, but no estimates of population size, density, or viability of remnant marten populations are available for evaluating their conservation status. We used GPS and VHF telemetry and spatial mark-resight to estimate home ranges, density, and population size of Pacific martens in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, central coast Oregon, USA. We then estimated population viability at differing levels of human-caused mortality (e.g., vehicle mortality). Marten home ranges were small on average (females = 0.8 km2, males 1.5 km2) and density (1.13 martens/1 km2) was the highest reported for North American populations (M. caurinaM. americana). We estimated 71 adult martens (95% CRI [41–87]) across two subpopulations separated by a large barrier (Umpqua River). Using population viability analysis, extinction risk for a subpopulation of 30 martens, approximately the size of the subpopulation south of the Umpqua River, ranged from 32% to 99% with two or three annual human-caused mortalities within 30 years. Absent population expansion, limiting human-caused mortalities will likely have the greatest conservation impact.”

Read the full research article here.

Authors: 1234