Northwest Fisheries Science Center


Recent Top Stories

salmon mural
Salmon Mural Unveiling
 Posted: September 14, 2018

NOAA Fisheries' West Coast Region has been working with a local youth group, Lake City Young Leaders, to create a salmon mural in Lake City. All are welcome to join the Lake City community on Thursday, September 20, from 5-7 pm to celebrate Puget Sound and its salmon.


DTAGs Help Us Study Killer Whales at Night
 Posted: September 7, 2018

Researchers from NOAA Fisheries will soon begin studying the nighttime behavior of Southern Resident killer whales using digital acoustic recording tags (DTAGs), which attach to the whales with suction cups. The DTAGs will help us better understand how much time the whales spend foraging and their use of sound, and will inform policies that might better protect the whales from vessel noise. DTAGs usually remain on the whales for one or two days before falling off on their own.   more...


Southern Resident killer whale updates
 Posted: August 20, 2018

Biologists are responding to an emaciated and ailing three year-old killer whale, J50 (also known as Scarlet), of the critically endangered Southern Resident population. Responders from NOAA Fisheries and partner organizations are working together to explore options and treatment. J35, an adult female (also known as Tahlequah), who carried her dead calf for over two weeks, is also being monitored.   more...


The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site Robin Waples awarded 2018 Molecular Ecology Prize
 Posted: August 14, 2018

The 2018 Molecular Ecology prize has been awarded to Robin Waples for his work on conservation biology and management, as the leading expert on approaches for using molecular markers to estimate and understand effective population size in natural populations and use of time series analyses. His studies have made important contributions to understanding fisheries populations and advanced the fields of conservation and evolutionary ecology.   The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site more...


Safer boats for seabirds
 Posted: July 23, 2018

Scientists and industry partners helped design solutions to the problem of seabirds striking net cables on catcher-processor vessels in fisheries along the U.S. West Coast and Alaska. Five potential solutions are being voluntarily tested by such vessels, potentially saving the lives of endangered albatross and other seabirds. The measures are described in a new NOAA Technical Memorandum.   more...


Saildrone launch begins test to improve West Coast fisheries surveys
 Posted: June 27, 2018

Two autonomous Saildrones launched from Neah Bay, Wash., Tuesday on a summer-long partnership between Saildrone Inc., NOAA Fisheries and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) to find out whether the wind and solar-powered vehicles can improve the efficiency and accuracy of fisheries surveys off the West Coast.   more...


Saildrones join NOAA fleet for experimental fisheries surveys
 Posted: June 26, 2018

NOAA Fisheries' two West Coast Science laboratories are joining forces with the Alameda, Calif., company Saildrone Inc. to test the first use of autonomous, wind and solar-powered vehicles to gather essential data on West Coast fish populations, including commercially valuable species such as hake, sardine, and anchovy.   more...


Salmon smolts in the Snake River. Mike Peterson/Idaho Department of Fish and Game
Less Error, Better Forecasts
 Posted: June 22, 2018

A new technical memorandum describes a statistical framework for modeling population changes in Chinook salmon in the Columbia and Snake Rivers. This integrated population model provides a way for fish biologists, managers, and industry to make better-informed decisions about fisheries management by providing more accurate estimates of future populations and their risks of extinction.   more...


New NOAA plan adopts ecosystem management principles
 Posted: June 18, 2018

NOAA Fisheries' NWFSC, together with the West Coast Region and Southwest Fisheries Science Center released a new blueprint for how the agency will put ecosystem-based management principles into practice on the West Coast.   more...


The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site New book on ocean ecology of Pacific salmon and trout
 Posted: May 1, 2018

NOAA Fisheries scientists from the Alaska, Northwest, and Southwest Fisheries Science Centers co-authored a new book summarizing the published research on ocean ecology of 6 species of Pacific salmon, steelhead and coastal cutthroat trout. The book, published by the American Fisheries Society, represents an unprecedented collaboration by American, Canadian, Russian, Korean, and Japanese scientists.   The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site more...


Killer whale genetics raise inbreeding questions
 Posted: April 18, 2018

A new genetic analysis of Southern Resident killer whales found that two male whales fathered more than half of the calves born since 1990 that scientists have samples from, a sign of inbreeding in the small killer whale population that frequents Washington's Salish Sea and Puget Sound. The analysis by lead author Mike Ford was published this week in the journal Animal Conservation.   more...


The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site Washington Shellfish Week
 Posted: April 13, 2018

Join us in celebrating all things shellfish during Washington Shellfish Week from April 15- April 21, 2018. Events are scheduled throughout the week and are open to the public. Activities include Washington Sea Grant's shellfish trail walks, the Hama Hama Oyster Rama, the Long Beach Razor Clam Festival, shellfish dining specials at Anthony's Restaurants and Picked Fish, beach-walks and workshops with Harbor WildWatch, a shellfish exhibit at the Puget Sound Estuarium, and much more.   The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site more...


scientist and captain holding rockfish on a cooperative research vessel
Citizen Science Day is April 14
 Posted: April 12, 2018

Each year, citizen scientists volunteer more than 500,000 hours to over 40 projects involving NOAA and our partners. In the Pacific Northwest, charter boat captains and 100 volunteer anglers collected 100 rare rockfish in the Puget Sound from 2014-2016. Our genetic analyses from these fishing trips provided new information and contributed to delisting of canary rockfish. Currently, citizen scientists help us monitor Puget Sound's waters and provide early warning of harmful algal blooms in order to minimize human health risks and economic losses to fisheries. Thank you, citizen scientists!


The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site Marine Science Day at Hatfield Marine Science Center
 Posted: April 12, 2018

Meet scientists from our observer program during Marine Science Day at the Hatfield Marine Science Center this Saturday, April 14 in Newport, Oregon. Join tours, meet scientists, and get a behind-the-scenes look at the research, education, and outreach in marine sciences that makes this marine laboratory unique in the Pacific Northwest. The event is free and open to the public.   The next link/button will exit from NWFSC web site more...


Biodiversity: ARMs gather who's hiding in Puget Sound
 Posted: April 5, 2018

After two and a half years, NWFSC's Gary Winans and a team of NOAA scientists retrieved three autonomous reef monitoring structures (ARMS) that had been placed at the bottom of Puget Sound near the Nisqually Delta. Check out all the cool critters they found in these incredibly diverse "invertebrate hotels", and why they are doing this research.   more...


Study reveals cost of 2017 salmon fisheries closure
 Posted: April 3, 2018

A new model by NWFSC and University of Washington scientists, described this week in the journal Marine Policy, helps determine the cost of fisheries closures based on the choices fishermen make. The authors found that last year's closure of the commercial ocean salmon troll fishery off the West Coast is estimated to have cost $5.8 million to $8.9 million in lost income for fishermen, with the loss of 200 to 330 jobs. Scientists hope the model will help policy makers anticipate the economic toll of fisheries closures.   more...


Keeping Boats on the Water
 Posted: March 26, 2018

The Fishery Regulation Assessment Model helps managers evaluate and recommend annual harvest allocations in fisheries up and down the U.S. West Coast. NOAA scientists and managers worked with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and industry representatives to provide genetic data in support of a recalibration effort. Results indicated at least one sensitive stock was encountered at lower rates than previously thought.   more...


Vulnerability and responses to ocean acidification
 Posted: March 16, 2018

There are areas in the United States where marine resources and the communities and industries that depend on them are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of ocean acidification. In three US regions, our understanding of vulnerability is being advanced by coupling ocean and social science data to equip communities and industries with the information needed to evaluate, anticipate, and adapt to ocean acidification.   more...


Status of the California Current Ecosystem
 Posted: March 9, 2018

Ocean conditions off most of the U.S. West Coast are returning roughly to average, after an extreme marine heat wave from about 2014 to 2016 disrupted the California Current Ecosystem and shifted many species beyond their traditional range, according to a new report from the Northwest and Southwest Fisheries Science Centers.   more...


Pacific salmon in hot water
 Posted: March 5, 2018

Rivers are a thermal landscape of varying water temperatures, and understanding how temperatures change over space and time can help us better manage cold-water species like Pacific salmon. A team of researchers from NWFSC, UW, USGS, and USDA published new research using a new tool to help envision the distribution of summer water temperature in over 7,000 miles of rivers and streams across the Pacific Northwest and northern California. Aimee Fullerton will present "Pacific salmon in hot water: past, present and future of thermal diversity in rivers" as part of the One-NOAA webinar series on March 6 at 9 am PST.   more...


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