Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Report
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 7925
Title: Distribution and abundance of fish in the Yakima River, Wash., April 1957 to May 1958
Author/Editor: Benjamin G. Patten, Richard B. Thompson, William D. Gronlund
Year: 1970
Institution: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Special Scientific Report: Fisheries No. 603

Fish were collected from the main stem (lower 281 km.) of the river at 2-month intervals.  Native fish consisted of six families, with 23 species and three hybrids; exotic fish consisted of five families with 10 species.  The water temperature from the mouth of the river to 145 km upstream was high in summer compared with the stretch between km 153 and 281.  Eleven species were taken principally from the lower 145 km of the river; 14 other species were taken mostly from the upper area.  The greatest numbers of fish were collected from the mouth to km. 64 and from km 120 to 177.  These abundances coincided with centers of abundance of the families Cyprinidae and Catostomidae.  Centrarchids were abundant below km 97, and Cottidae and Salmonidae were most abundant above km 161.  The fewest fish were collected between km 72 and 89, possibly because of slow current, high summer temperatures, and a muddy bottom.  Seasonal distribution and abundance of each species are discussed.  Although cyprinids and catostomids were the most abundant fish, salmon (genus Oncorhynchus) and trout (genus Salmo) are the most valuable to man.  Trout and juvenile salmon were most common from km 153 to 281.