We can't ignore freshwater habitat

 

November 15, 2018



agree with a recent writer that our fisheries are in peril and affected by the marine environment, but that does not give us carte blanche to ignore the degradation of river habitat. Declaring that marine survival is the problem affecting our fish is a vast oversimplification of a complex global problem affecting our salmon. Research by ADF&G biologist Randy Ericksen in the 1990’s shows that most Chilkat chinook spend their saltwater years in inside waters, not the open ocean. The low number of returning kings, no matter the cause, makes it imperative to provide them with good spawning conditions.

The demands of modern life bring upgrade projects such as the Haines Highway. The precise ways in which the marine environment affects our salmon are not known, but what has been documented are the many impacts from human development on stream habitat and survival.

The changes that Stand for Salmon sought to bring about are reasonable and needed for long term balance between resource development and natural resources like clean water and fish. The $12 million spent by outside corporations has successfully duped some Alaskans into blaming our fisheries’ problems on marine survival alone, while ignoring the significant and well documented impacts of clear-cut logging and large scale mining in anadromous watersheds.


Yes our oceans are in peril for many reasons, so let’s monitor cumulative impacts from all projects impacting anadromous fish habitat and act to protect our own backyard.

Scotty Carey

 
 

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