University of Oregon

Coos Watershed’s Coho Lifecycle Monitoring Project

Coos Watershed’s coho life cycle monitoring project investigates the ecology of salmonids in Palouse and Willanch Creeks, two estuarine tidal streams. The target is juvenile coho salmon >65mm that can be PIT tagged and recaptured actively and passively for growth, abundance and survival analysis. We do a variety of field sampling that varies seasonally. A minimum commitment of 4 hours per week would best support our efforts and provide an opportunity for interns to fully experience the project. http://www.cooswatershed.org/coholcm

 

2014 Spawning Coho

2014 Spawning Coho

Fall (Sept–Dec): 

Conclude summer juvenile salmonid sampling (see below). The majority of effort will transition to spawning surveys in upper stream reaches in early October. These adult salmon surveys cover approximately 3.5 miles on each study stream and are conducted on a weekly (10 day rotation) following ODFW protocols. Coos Watershed will provide all necessary gear for hiking the streams.

 

 

Spring (April-mid June):

2015 Palouse Creek Rotary Screw Trap

2015 Palouse Creek Rotary Screw Trap

The focus of project efforts will be sampling fish populations at two Rotary Screw Traps (RST) that are checked on a daily basis from late February till early June. Spawning surveys will continue (biweekly) in Palouse Creek throughout the spring through early June. This is winter steelhead spawning season and a good time to observe this iteroparous salmonid and the two species of lamprey in Oregon. Active juvenile (smolt) salmonid sampling to include seining, electrofishing and snorkeling is initiated in the spring when stream flows permit these methods of sampling.

 

2015 Juvenile fish sampling

2015 Juvenile fish sampling

Summer (June-Aug):

Continued active sampling for juvenile salmonids will be the focus of the projects summer efforts. We will sample about two sites per day 2-3 times a week. We measure, weigh and PIT tag salmonids while counting other species. When available, we will actively recapture PIT tagged fish with mobile readers at previously sampled sites. Opportunities to work with other projects and groups that we collaborate with (ODFW, etc.) are available as well.

 

Contacts

Ed Hughes
Project Monitoring Manager
Coos Watershed Association
63534 Kingfisher Drive
P.O. Box 5860
Charleston, OR 97420
Office: (541) 888-5922
Email:ehughes@cooswatershed.org
Webpage:http://www.cooswatershed.org/staff_hughes.php

Alexa Carleton
Outreach Coordinator
Coos Watershed Association
63534 Kingfisher Drive
PO Box 5860
Charleston, OR 97420
Office: (541) 888-5922
Email:acarleton@cooswatershed.org
Webpage:http://www.cooswatershed.org/staff_carleton.php

Past Coos Watershed Interns

Kelsey Swieca

Overall my internship working on the Coho Life Cycle Monitoring Program with Coos Watershed Association provided me with a slough of skills and knowledge in the field of fisheries biology. The skills I obtained allowed me to secure my current job as an Aquatics and Land Interaction Technician with the US Forest Service. I worked under Ed Hughes and Jon Sauder primarily operating rotary screw traps. These traps are designed to funnel fry and smolts into a live box that needs to be checked each morning. The fish need to be identified, anesthetized, weighed, measured, PIT tagged and released each day. I enjoyed the flexibility of this internship that easily worked with my class schedule as well as the opportunity to gain field experience and simply enjoy the outdoors for a few hours each day!