Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Washington State University Research Team Helping Insure Against Loss Of Salmon Genes

Date:
October 5, 2000
Source:
Washington State University
Summary:
Washington State University researchers are working to prevent the extinction of salmon in Columbia Basin rivers by making sure the genetic record remains intact.

PULLMAN, Wash.-- Washington State University researchers are working to prevent the extinction of salmon in Columbia Basin rivers by making sure the genetic record remains intact.

As several teams of WSU scientists study the various areas most often implicated in salmon decline: habitat degradation, harvesting, hydropower dams, and hatcheries, one of the teams is attempting to preserve the genetic diversity of the fish by establishing a Northwest salmon sperm repository. The work is being done in collaboration with the Nez Perce tribe and the University of Idaho.

WSU biologist Gary Thorgaard calls the project an insurance policy "Columbia Basin salmon and steelhead are locally adapted to their environment. Local strains are those that will survive the best and reproduce the best," said Thorgaard. "If we lose some of these strains or the population drops so low that inbreeding becomes a problem, then we will need to have an insurance policy to rebuild the runs in the future when the environment improves."

Since the initial sperm collection in 1992, tribal biologists have recorded a drop in the number of salmon spawning nests, called redds, in regional streams. This year's increases in returning salmon are largely hatchery fish, giving an overly positive impression that things are improving, Thorgaard said.

Tribal fishery staff net fish in Snake River salmon spawning tributaries, milk the sperm, and have it flown by small charter planes to Washington State and the University of Idaho, located eight miles apart in the Palouse area of Washington and Idaho. Once at the universities, the sperm is frozen. For safety, specimens from each male are stored in four receptacles-two each at both universities.

"There is no quick fix in dealing with salmon recovery," said Thorgaard. "We believe that the samples we are collecting and storing insure against the permanent loss of critical genetic material, and could to be very important in future recovery and restoration efforts."

Team members include Thorgaard; Paul Wheeler, a WSU research technician; University of Idaho biologist Joe Cloud, Nez Perce Tribe members and fish biologists Paul Kucera and Robyn Armstrong. Their work is supported by the Nez Perce Tribe, the Bonnevillle Power Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Washington State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Washington State University. "Washington State University Research Team Helping Insure Against Loss Of Salmon Genes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 October 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/10/001005075834.htm>.
Washington State University. (2000, October 5). Washington State University Research Team Helping Insure Against Loss Of Salmon Genes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/10/001005075834.htm
Washington State University. "Washington State University Research Team Helping Insure Against Loss Of Salmon Genes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/10/001005075834.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

AP (Sep. 20, 2014) The San Diego Zoo has welcomed two Cheetah cubs to its Safari Park. The nearly three-week-old female cubs are being hand fed and are receiving around the clock care. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins