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Thread: Hatchery genetics study

  1. #1
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Default Hatchery genetics study

    Hatchery life changes fish genetics, Oregon study finds - OregonLive.com
    https://apple.news/AKXc368gHMQmqL78HNxgIYQ

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    I would note that the study focused on steelhead. As such, the results should only be applied to steelhead. Applying these results to other species of fish, such as Chinook or coho or sockeye or anything else is not good biology.

    As we all know, steelhead are rainbow trout. And rainbow trout are one of the most easily domesticated fish on the planet. Their genes easily mutate to conform to the environment they are raised in (e.g., hatchery or stream). As such, domestication is easy. I would not make the same assumption about other species of fish that we raise in hatcheries, such as Chinook salmon. So we ought not say that the study results apply equally to other species.

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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Ought not to, i concur, but seems logical to think so. Id like to see a few studies on salmonoids for comparison. I've long said that I personally "think" that hatchery fish are not good for the genetics of a specie. Good for people maybe - probably; but, IMO anything that humans do to the species just is not as good as mother nature. Not a lot of fact I know....


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    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Interesting study. An important follow up study, I think, would be to track offspring of hatchery fish, and see if there is a genetic shift back toward wild genetics. Both in steelhead and other salmonids. I think the biggest takeaway from this study is how fluid the genetic makeup of steelhead is; that in one generation there can be such dramatic changes to the species' genetic profile.

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    One only needs to look at the shrinking (size wise) sockeyes at the Main Bay Hatchery the last two years to see the genetic problems associated with hatcheries. Hatchery spawners aren't those with superior genes selected by nature. They are randomly selected fish that return to the hatchery. Add to that the practice of using one male to spawn several females instead of the natural one to one spawning ratio and you are shrinking the male side of the genetic stew.

    The Main Bay Hatchery returns the last two years have averaged 4 lbs or less compared to the traditional 6-7 lbs of Sound sockeyes. Wild Coghill stocks which are the original source of the Main Bay Hatchery stock traditionally averaged 7 lbs. Something is going on at that hatchery, and it's not good.
    An opinion should be the result of thought, not a substitute for it.
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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Some say that main bay fish were spawned from jacks.


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