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Elwha dam removal timing


Good news for Elwha salmon from the March NPS newsletter. Might dam removal begin in 2011, instead of 2012? I’m trying to keep track of the timeline (and be sure it doesn’t slip backwards) here. clipped from www.nps.gov Work Progressing on Elwha Construction Projects; Ever Closer to Dam Removal The Elwha Water Facilities (EWF) and [...]

Habitat use


Gregg Schorr for Brad, dive behavior Is dive depth related to prey preference? Do dive rates vary between pods, day/night, years? Is frequency of max dive depth constant over time? Prey field mapping in Sept, 2004 (after sockeye, during fall Chinook run): big targets are near middle of water column (>100m); prey assemblages different in [...]

SRKW health


Pete for Steve Rafferty, epidemiological and pathologic findings Only 10/81 confirmed SR deaths and 4/142 of NR were beach cast and available for post-mortem examination.  Infectious pneumonia is most common reported cause of mortality (60% of those necropsied).  We now have a standardized protocol for doing necropsies (available at http://seadocsociety.org)  Since 2002, Steve and Joe [...]

Contaminants in SRKWs


Sandra O’Neill, Contaminants in salmon We’ve heard that S and N residents are both eating mostly Chinook.  Why are the southern residents more contaminated than the northern residents? Contaminants in fish are determined by: where they live what they eat how long they are exposed how fat they are Chinook and Coho have elevated [PBDE] [...]

Prey relationship talks


8:35 John Ford, resident KW foraging ecology What may have caused the simultaneous declines in the N and S residents during the late 1990s?  Nutritional stress? We compared expected and observed births and deaths, where expectations were based on period of unlimited growth (’73-’90).  There were two phases of increased mortality in adult/juvenile fe/males: late [...]

Vessel interactions/noise talks


14:55 Val Veirs giving Marla’s talk on “Vocal Compensation in SRKWs” Background noise levels had mean of 110.1 DB +/- 4.1; range 98-123dB Call source level: mean of 55.3dB +/-7.4 dB Lombard effect in SRKWs is present; ~1dB increase in S1 call source level for every 1dB increase in ambient noise level ambient noise increases [...]

Ken Balcomb: SRKW demographic update


First there was Mike Bigg.  Early census effort started in 1976 and was motivated by concern about the captures for aquariums which took out about 50 animals.  1976-1984 habitat use was very similar to current critical habitat!  Most encounters May-October, with J pod present year-round. Ken and Mike worried about how to ID babies.  They [...]

Killer whale regulation enforcement panel


Alan Wolf, NOAA; Larry Palke, Fisheries and Oceans, Canada; Stefan Beckman, Fisheries and Oceans, Canada; Russ Mullins, WDFW There is not currently any permitting process, but one is under consideration in Canada… Russ: on our 30+ patrols per summer, most infractions are by private recreational boaters. In 2008, there were two commercial infractions and ~50 [...]

U.S.+Canada recovery process, U.S. whale watching industry


10:00 Lynne Barre, NWFSC Critical habitat can be modified.  A future step is designating habitat outside of the inland waters of WA. Recovery plan implementation was started in 2003, well before the endangered listing in 2005. Proposed regulations are under review… no date given for when rule-making will occur. Consultations regarding potential impacts result in [...]

Columbia River sea otters after 100y?


Interesting that the WA sea otters (a transient orca food source?) may be expanding their range from the NW coast of the Olympic Peninsula. Though the Salish Sea habitat is certainly appropriate for them, they apparently are rarely seen east of a line between Port Angeles and Race Rocks. Reference http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/whc/seadoc/pdfs/VanBlaricom01.pdf clipped from www.dailyastorian.com The [...]