Northwest Fisheries Science Center

Display All Information

Document Type: Chapter or Section
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 4579
Type of Book: Technical
Section or Chapter Title: Measuring biological sustainability via a decision support system: Experiences with Oregon Coast coho salmon
Book Title: Making Transparent Environmental Management Decisions: Applications of the Ecosystem Management Decision Support system
Series Title: Environmental Science
Author: Thomas C. Wainwright, Peter W. Lawson, G. H. Reeves, Laurie A. Weitkamp, H. A. Stout, J. S. Mills
Editor: Keith M. Reynolds, Paul F. Hessburg, Patrick S. Bourgeron (Eds.)
Publication Year: 2014
City: Heidelberg
Publisher: Springer
Pages: 277-300
Keywords: coho salmon,recovery planning,endangered species,decision support,sustainability,conservation,

Conservation of Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) has become increasingly important as major populations have declined in abundance to the point of being listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. The complex life-history of Pacific salmon species and the diversity of habitats they occupy require multifaceted recovery efforts, and the metrics needed to evaluate species status and progress toward recovery are necessarily complex. Formal decision support systems (DSS) are designed to assist decision-makers in integrating and evaluating many factors. We describe a knowledge-based DSS for evaluating the biological status of Oregon coast coho salmon (O. kisutch). We then compare our DSS to similar tools and consider its advantages and disadvantages. We show how the DSS can provide a transparent and logical framework linking multiple criteria across geographic scales for a unified assessment. Once constructed, the DSS can serve as an institutional knowledge base, codifying the pathways from data to criteria evaluation and supporting consistent future status evaluations with a path to incorporating new knowledge over time. The DSS was not trivial to implement, nor is it easy to explain to resource managers, and we offer suggestions to address these problems. The DSS was particularly helpful in providing a logical and reproducible way to quantify multiple risks and assess progress toward recovery across multiple spatial and temporal scales. Development of this DSS is an important step in the evolution of assessment tools for salmon conservation.

URL1: The next link will exit from NWFSC web site Available here
Theme: Recovery, Rebuilding and Sustainability of Marine and Anadromous Species
Foci: Investigate ecological and socio-economic effects of alternative management strategies or governance structures.
Characterize vital rates and other demographic parameters for key species, and develop and improve methods for predicting risk and viability/sustainability from population dynamics and demographic information.