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Subject: CRS: Daily Summary - 3/17/2000 - Longer Friday Version - Part 2 of 2
From: From Matt Huggler by way of Peter Hagen <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Scientific forum on fish and fisheries <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Fri, 17 Mar 2000 16:15:40 -0900

text/plain (353 lines)

Note to list members: These reports from the  U.S. Congressional
Research Service, are generally posted once a week and are made
available by way of friendly staff in congress.  If you would rather not
see them in your mailbox you can modify your subscription by sending the
command  SET FISH-SCI TOPICS -CRS to [log in to unmask]


{Lower Columbia Sport Fishery.  On Mar. 15, 2000, OR and WA officials closed
the lower Columbia River sport fishing season on spring chinook, after NMFS
declined to issue the states permits to take ESA-listed Snake River chinook.
NMFS did not issue the permit because the Columbia River Fish Management
plan between these states for allocating harvest had expired in July 1999.
State managers contend the fishery is managed to focus on Willamette River
hatchery chinook and minimize the threat to ESA-list salmon.} [Assoc Press]

{CA Management.  On Mar. 14, 2000, the CA Board of Forestry and Fire
Protection held a public hearing in Sacramento to consider changes to CA's
Forest Practice rules affecting streams, road building, and logging [ ] on
private land from Santa Cruz County to the OR border.  Both loggers and
environmentalists protested the proposed new rules on how close to streams
private landowners could cut timber to better protect coho salmon and
steelhead trout; sport and commercial fishermen supported the new rules.}
{{On Mar. 15, 2000, the CA Board of Forestry and Fire Protection voted
unanimously to adopt a compromise set of temporary logging limits to
increase protection for coho salmon.  Under the compromise, logging near
streams on private land will be limited through the end of 2000 while
specific plans are developed for each major watershed.}} [San Jose Mercury,
Assoc Press]

{NPPC Salmon Expenditures.  On Mar. 14, 2000, the Northwest Power Planning
Council (NPPC) met in Pasco, WA, to discuss development of a master plan to
guide future decisions on spending about $120 million annually to restore
salmon.} [Assoc Press]

{Northern California Water.  On Mar. 13, 2000, U.S. District Court Judge
Oliver Wanger, in response to a San Joaquin Valley farmers' lawsuit, ruled
that the U.S. Dept. of the Interior had legally used and accounted for
Central Valley Project water ordered to remain in northern CA rivers for
environmental purposes to benefit threatened and endangered fish.} [Fresno

Fish-Friendly Turbines?  On Mar. 7, 2000, Army Corps of Engineers officials
announced that, upon testing, a new $1.25 million "fish-friendly" turbine at
Bonneville Dam fell somewhat short of anticipated levels of salmon
protection, improving juvenile salmon survival by 2-3%.  Nine additional
"fish-friendly" turbines are planned for Bonneville Dam. [Portland

Elwha River Dams.  In early March 2000, titles to the Elwha and Glines
Canyon dams were transferred from the Fort James Paper Co. And Daishowa
America Inc. to the U.S. National Park Service.  Pending further review, the
dams are being operated by the Bureau of Reclamation for power production.
[Dept. of the Interior press release, Trout Unlimited press release, Assoc

{{Dworshak Hatchery.  On the weekend of Mar. 4-5, 2000, intruders at the
Dworshak National Fish Harchery, ID, released 150-200 hatchery-raised adult
steelhead trout from a hatchery holding pond.}} [Spokane Spokesman]

Pacific Salmon Treaty.  On Mar. 2, 2000, British Columbia's Fisheries
Minister Corky Evans announced that the BC government was dropping its
appeal in U.S. federal court in a September 1997 lawsuit challenging U.S.
implementation of the Pacific Salmon Treaty.  BC took this action to signal
an intent to improve cooperation with the United States. [Canadian Press,
Assoc Press]

{International Enforcement.  On Mar. 1-3, 2000, U.S., Japanese, Canadian,
and Russian officials met in Tokyo for an Enforcement Planning and
Coordination meeting under the authority of the North Pacific Anadromous
Fish Commission to coordinate high seas driftnet enforcement in the North
Pacific.} [Coast Guard press release]

Theodosia River Dam.  On Feb. 28, 2000, British Columbia officials announced
the conclusion of an agreement with Pacifica Papers Inc. to demolish a
292-foot long dam across the Theodosia River.  This would be the first large
Canadian dam to be removed, and would benefit coho, pink, and chum salmon
populations entering Georgia Strait. [Environment News Service]

Enloe Dam.  In late February 2000, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
rescinded the license for the Enloe Dam project on the Similkameen River in
Okanogan County, WA, after a challenge from NMFS and imposition of a fish
passage requirement. [Environment News Service]

Salmon Recovery Critique.  On Feb. 24, 2000, two retired high-ranking
federal officials (Fish and Wildlife Service and Forest Service) are
scheduled to speak at a press breakfast at American Rivers, Washington, DC,
to give an "insider's" perspective on why past efforts to save salmon have
failed. [American Rivers press release]

Bristol Bay Salmon Lawsuit.  On Feb. 24, 2000, AK fishermen plan to file an
appeal of an earlier Superior Court decision with the AK Supreme Court,
concerning a lawsuit over price-fixing claims against Japanese salmon
importers by more than 5,000 commercial fishermen. [Anchorage Daily News]

Klamath Fishery.  On Feb. 23-25, 2000 (Brookings, OR) and Mar. 5, 2000
(Sacramento, CA), the Klamath Fishery Management Council is scheduled to
meet to develop recommendations for salmon harvest management for year 2000.
Recommendations will be forwarded to the Pacific Fishery Management Council.
[U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service press release]

Water Flow Lawsuit.  On Feb. 22, 2000, a coalition of environmental and
commercial fishing interests filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court,
demanding federal agencies to increase water flow in the Snake and Columbia
Rivers to benefit salmon migration.  The lawsuit alleges that the Army Corps
of Engineers and the Bureau of Reclamation have failed to meet minimum flows
necessary for salmon survival set by NMFS.  To attain these flows, agencies
would have to use water now allocated to ID farmers for irrigation. [Assoc

WA Management.  On Feb. 22, 2000, the WA Dept. of Ecology held a forum in
Mercer Island, to release a new proposal on revised guidelines for managing
development of shoreline property under the state's Shoreline Management
Act.  These revisions are complicated by the fact that WA officials are
uncertain about the effect of building docks and bulkheads might have on
ESA-listed salmon; WA officials are working with NMFS to determine what
requirements should be included to comply with the ESA.  These revisions are
to be completed by July 23, 2000, with a series of public hearings scheduled
for May 2000.  {Mar. 20, 2000 is the deadline for comments on draft Puget
sound chinook salmon recovery framework regulations [ ] developed by the Tri-County Salmon Recovery
Group.} [Seattle Herald, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Seattle Times]

AAAS Symposium.  On Feb. 21, 2000, a symposium "Scientific Advice for
Endangered Species Recovery" was held at the annual meeting of the American
Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Washington, DC.  The
symposium focused on the adequacy of science to address salmon issues.
[Seattle Times]

Dam Breaching.  In a Feb. 18, 2000 speech at a meeting of the OR Chapter of
the American Fisheries Society in Eugene, OR Governor John Kitzhaber
endorsed breaching the 4 lower Snake River dams as a responsible and cost-
effective option, becoming the first major elected official to endorse dam
breaching.  In response on Feb. 22, 2000, WA Governor Gary Locke announced
that he did not support dam breaching.  On Feb. 23, 2000, the Port of
Portland released a study by HDR Engineering and commissioned by the Port
and 3 OR state agencies, outlining the potential cascading negative effects
of dam breaching, including the possible loss of 4 of the 6 ocean freight
line serving Portland, diversion of export containers to Puget Sound ports,
and removal of marginal agricultural lands in eastern OR and WA from
production.  On Feb. 23, 2000, Presidential candidate John McCain was
reported to have stated in Spokane, WA, that he would consider dam breaching
if scientific evidence indicates it's necessary to save salmon.  On Feb. 28,
2000, Presidential candidate George W. Bush, speaking in Pasco, WA, promised
to forestall breaching of the 4 lower Snake River dams.  Radio
advertisements supportive of George W. Bush called breaching "a big
mistake."  On Feb. 29, 2000, NM Rep. Tom Udall was reported to have written
a letter to President Clinton, becoming the first Member of Congress to
publically endorse breaching the 4 lower Snake River dams.  On Mar. 9, 2000,
and for the second year in a row, the environmental group American Rivers
named the Snake River in WA as the nation's most endangered river and called
on the Clinton Administration to breach the 4 hydroelectric dams to aid
salmon recovery efforts. [Assoc Press, Portland Oregonian, MSNBC, American
Rivers press release]

Salmon Management Options.  From Feb. 3 through Mar. 8, 2000, a total of 13
public hearings were held by Bonneville Power Administration and 8 other
federal agencies across OR, WA, ID, MT, and AK on the U.S. Army Corps of
Engineers Draft Lower Snake River Juvenile Salmon Migration Feasibility
Report/Environmental Impact Statement and the Federal Caucus Conservation of
Columbia Basin Fish "All-H Paper" [ ] presenting options
for altering harvest, hatcheries, habitat, and hydroelectric dams.  The
initial hearing on Feb. 3, 2000, in Portland, OR, was attended by at least
1,000 people. [Assoc. Press]


Pittsburgh Aquarium.  May 13, 2000 is the scheduled opening date for the
Pittsburg Zoo's new $15.9 million, 42,000 square foot AquaZoo, including a
rotating fish tank, a 100,000-gallon shark tank, and interactive exhibits.
[Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

{Aquaroid Fish?  At a Tokyo toy fair on Mar. 16, 2000, Takara Co. displayed
a new line of Aquaroid Fish -- robot cyber-pets, including a fish, a
jellyfish, and a crab.  These solar-powered, computer-controlled creations
are to become available in Japanese stores in fall 2000, with a price of
around $140 each.} [Assoc Press]

GM Salmon.  On Feb. 24, 2000, the Board of Directors of the British Columbia
Salmon Farmers Association (BCSFA) voted unanimously to strengthen its
policy against use of transgenic or genetically modified (GM) fish in BC.
On Feb. 25, 2000, officials of New Zealand King Salmon Co., Ltd. announced
that the company had killed all its genetically modified fish and suspended
research after succeeding in introducing an additional growth hormone gene
into Chinook salmon and passing this trait through 3 generations of fish.
Frozen sperm of GM salmon was retained to continue the program in the
future.  The company claimed its GM salmon could grow to 550 pounds. [Assoc
Press, BCSFA press release]

South Carolina Aquarium.  On Feb. 23, 2000, the first resident, a 327- pound
green sea turtle, was introduced to the South Carolina Aquarium's
330,000-gallon tank.  This $69 million facility is scheduled to open on May
19, 2000. [Assoc Press]


{Kokanee Recovery.  On Mar. 13, 2000, King County Executive Ron Sims
proposed emergency measures to restore kokanee (non-migratory sockeye
salmon) that spawn in lower Issaquah Creek, including a supplementation
program for kokanee at the Issaquah Hatchery to increase spawning success.}
[Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Seattle Times]

Fairy Shrimp.  On Mar. 8, 2000, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed
designating critical habitat for endangered San Diego fairy shrimp on a
total of more than 36,000 acres in Orange and San Diego Counties, CA.
Public comment is being accepted through May 8, 2000. [Assoc Press]

FWS Budget.  On Mar. 2, 2000, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on
Interior and Related Agencies held a hearing on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service's FY2001 budget request. [personal communication]

Golden Trout Treatment.  On Feb. 28 and 29, 2000, the CA Dept. of Fish and
Game and the U.S. Forest Service have scheduled public meetings in Lone Pine
and Kernville to consider proposed September 2000 and September 2001
rotenone treatments of 2 miles of Movie Stinger, a tributary of the South
Fork of the Kern River in the Golden Trout Wilderness, Inyo National Forest,
to eliminate non-native fish and hybridized golden trout and protect the
genetic integrity of native golden trout.  Public comment is being accepted
through Mar. 15, 2000. [Daily Independent (Ridgecrest)]

Russian Icefishing Emergency.  On Feb. 28, 2000, helicopters rescued as many
as 1,000 Russian icefishermen from an ice floe that had broken loose the
previous day in Lake Ladoga, northeast of St. Petersburg,  in response to
warming weather.  Six people were reported to have drowned. [Reuters]

Right to Fish.  In late February 2000, the VA Senate was poised to approve
HB 787 and take the last step toward putting a proposed state constitutional
amendment asserting the right to hunt and fish on the November 2000 state
ballot. [Roanoke Times]

Atlantic Salmon.  In late February 2000, Dept. of the Interior officials
delivered requested genetic information on Atlantic salmon to ME officials
for independent analysis.  The State of ME had filed a lawsuit against the
federal government, seeking access to the genetic data and an extension of
the Mar. 15, 2000 deadline for public comment on the proposed listing of
Atlantic salmon under the ESA.  In early March 2000, U.S. District Judge
Gene Carter extended the public comment time by 30 days, or until April
14,2000, to give ME scientists time to review genetic data.  {On Mar. 14,
2000, the ME Legislature's Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee voted to
reject a bill that proposed reopening ME's fishing season for
catch-and-release taking of Atlantic salmon in 3 rivers where these fish
have not been proposed for listing under the Endangered Species Act.  This
fishery had been closed by ME's Atlantic Salmon Commission in December 1999.
On Mar. 15, 2000, NMFS and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published
notice that the public comment period on the proposal to list populations of
Atlantic salmon in ME as an endangered species had been extended through
Apr. 14, 2000.} [Fed. Register, American Lands press release, Assoc Press]

Bottled Water and Trout.  On Feb. 23, 2000, WI state officials announced
that Perrier Group (Greenwich, CT) was considering abandoning plans to drill
a well at Mecan Springs, that could involve pumping quantities of water that
would threaten trout in the Mecan River. [Assoc Press]

Zebra Mussels.  On Feb. 21, 2000, a marina employee at Lake of the Ozarks,
MO, recognized the threat posed by an arriving cabin cruiser whose hull was
encrusted by thousands of zebra mussels.  The vessel was isolated in dry
dock, prevent a possible massive zebra mussel infestation of MO's inland
lakes. [MO Dept. of Conservation press release, Detroit Free Press]


CITES Hearing.  On Mar. 28, 2000, the House Resources Subcommittee on
Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans has scheduled an oversight
hearing on April 2000 meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and
Flora (CITES). [personal communication]

{{Japanese Whaling.  On Mar. 16, 2000, the International Fund for Animal
Welfare (IFAW) and Greenpeace release the results of a survey of 1,185
Japanese adults on attitudes about whaling and whalemeat consumption.  About
55% of the Japanese public had no opinion or were neutral regarding
commercial whaling, 14% opposed whaling outright, 11% supported commercial
whaling, and 20% reported that the reason for killing whales would affect
whether they supported whaling.  In addition, about 61% had not eaten
whalemeat since childhood, if at all.}} [IFAW press release]

{Manatee and Sea Turtle Ruling.  On Mar. 10, 2000 and in response to a
lawsuit by a coalition of environmental groups, a FL Circuit Court judge
ruled that, contrary to a specific exemption by the FL Legislature, a FL
constitutional amendment gives the FL Fish and Wildlife Conservation
Commission the right to protect marine species (e.g., manatees and sea
turtles) as well as land animals.} [Assoc Press]

Soviet Navy Mammals.  In early March 2000, the London Times reported that
Crimean authorities had completed the sale and transfer to Iran of 27 marine
mammals (dolphins, beluga whales, walruses, and sea lions) trained by the
former Soviet Navy. [London Times]

Sea Lion Protection.  In early March 2000, New Zealand closed a squid
fishery around the Auckland Islands after endangered New Zealand sea lion
bycatch mortality reached 65 animals.  The early closure may result in as
much as a NZ$50 million loss to the fishing industry. [Southland Times]

Dolphins in the Navy.  In early March 2000, the U.S. Navy flew two female
dolphins from San Diego, CA, to Sitka, AK, for participation in the Northern
Edge 2000 military exercise. [Anchorage Daily News]

Mexican Salt Works Project.  On Mar. 2, 2000, Mexican President Ernesto
Zedillo and officials of Mitsubishi Corp. announced that the government of
Mexico and Mitsubishi Corp. would not continue to pursue construction of a
salt works project adjacent to San Ignacio lagoon. [Embassy of Mexico press
release, Reuters, International Fund for Animal Welfare press release]

Whale Research Irregularities?  On Feb. 29, 2000, 2nd Circuit District Court
(Maui) Judge Shackley Raffetto held an arraignment and plea hearing for the
Pacific Whale Foundation, which was cited on 91 misdemeanor charges for
allegedly conducting whale research in HI waters before a state permit was
issued in February 1998.  The federal government has also charged the
foundation with 7 civil violations under the MMPA and Endangered Species
Act.  {{The Foundation pleaded not guilty, and May 22, 2000 was set as the
state trial date.}}  A hearing on the federal charges is scheduled for late
March 2000. [Maui News]

Keiko.  On Feb. 23, 2000, Ocean Futures announced a postponement, at least
until early March 2000, of the planned release of the orca whale Keiko from
his seapen into the net-enclosed Klettsvik Bay, Iceland, due to tidal surges
and wind loosening anchoring bolts of the barrier net.  On Mar. 3, 2000,
Keiko was released from his pen into the larger net-enclosed Klettsvik Bay
[]. [Portland Oregonian, Reuters, Ocean Futures
press release]

North Atlantic Right Whale.  On Feb. 22-24, 2000, NMFS held a workshop in
Danvers, MA, to determine ways commercial fishing might be modified to
increase protection for northern right whales.  On Mar. 1, 2000, rescue
teams attempted to disentangle a 20-year old male northern right whale found
tangled in fishing gear off Manomet, MA, in Cape Cod Bay.  Initial attempts
were unsuccessful, but the whale appeared to be strong and in good health.
On Mar. 3, 2000, the Conservation Law Foundation (Boston, MA) filed a 60-day
notice of intent to sue NMFS, claiming failure to take action sufficient to
protect endangered north Atlantic right whales under the Endangered Species
Act. [Assoc Press, Boston Herald, Boston Globe]

CA Sea Otters.  On Feb. 22, 2000, officials of the Monterey Bay Aquarium
announced that a sea otter, raised in captivity, rehabilitated, and then
released to the wild, had given birth in the wild in November 1999 and
appeared to be successfully raising this pup.  This was reportedly a first
for the Aquarium's 16-year sea otter pup rescue program. [San Jose Mercury]

Items in this Summary are excerpted from a variety of information sources.
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is not responsible for the accuracy
of the various news items.

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