[ODFW-News] Hatchery Research Center opens

ODFW News Odfw.News at state.or.us
Fri Oct 14 17:38:45 PDT 2005

For Immediate Release   Friday, Oct. 14, 2005


Hatchery Research Center opens


ALSEA - State officials and hundreds of Oregonians gathered near Alsea
today for the grand opening of the Oregon Hatchery Research Center,
which is expected to become an internationally recognized destination
for fish research.   


The $7.8 million facility, located on the site of the former Fall Creek
Hatchery, will research differences that may exist between hatchery and
wild salmon and steelhead. It was built with funds appropriated by the
2003 Oregon Legislature, and will be jointly operated by ODFW and Oregon
State University. 


In a ribbon-cutting ceremony led today by Governor Theodore Kulongoski
and officials from OSU and the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission, the
Governor underscored the importance of salmon and steelhead to Oregon. 


"Today represents a new step forward for Oregon's economy and in
protecting and restoring threatened and endangered fish," Kulongoski
said. This facility is the result of a joint vision by the State of
Oregon and Oregon State University. This partnership will deliver
benefits for all Oregonians, now and into the future."


Salmon and steelhead are pillars of Oregon's culture and economy. More
than 500,000 licensed sport anglers spend about $600 million each year
on recreational fishing, resulting in $300 million in job-related income
to citizens. Fishing-related activities are an important source of
income for many Oregonians. The state's commercial fishing industry
provides another $160 million in personal income.  


Dan Edge, chair of OSU's Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, noted
that fisheries scientists have historically speculated about the impact
of hatcheries on the natural environment and how hatchery-raised fish
might impact wild stocks. 


"The research goals of this facility are critical to future management
of salmon and steelhead in Oregon," Edge said. "We are excited to begin
this scientific exploration and develop a better understanding of
fisheries management."


Research at the facility will focus on native fish recovery and hatchery
programs, and how to best manage hatcheries. Several of the original
raceways from the Fall Creek Hatchery were kept intact, and a series of
four artificial streams was constructed to mimic natural conditions. The
operation also boasts wet and dry laboratories and a 44-unit tank farm. 


OSU has hired internationally acclaimed fish researcher Dr. David Noakes
to head the facility. Noakes officially begins his duties on Saturday.




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