Total Marking Program: California Hatchery Chinook
Marking Chinook salmon
Marking Chinook salmon in California fish hatcheries

Hatchery Reform and Total Marking Initiative
for California Hatchery Chinook Salmon


SmoltThe fall Chinook run, historically the most abundant and stable, has declined to record lows in 2007 and 2008. Coupled with recent findings indicating up to 90% of adult Central Valley salmon originate from hatcheries (CalTrout 2008), a threatened listing for fall run Chinook may be imminent.

Smolt Improved management and recovery of California salmon requires that scientists and fisherman alike be able to easily distinguish between native-born and hatchery fish as they are encountered in juvenile monitoring programs, ocean fisheries, inland fisheries, and adult salmon sampling programs.


To improve salmon management efforts and minimize the genetic and ecological impacts of hatchery programs, we propose that 100% of Chinook salmon produced at Central Valley (CV) and Klamath anadromous fish hatcheries shall be adipose fin clipped (Total Marking) beginning in 2010 (or as soon as possible).

Click here to download a request to support the mass marking and hatchery reform initiative. The letter is drafted and signed by recognized fishery experts Peter Moyle, Josh Israel, Lee Blankenship and Brad Cavallo.

Click here to download the Cal-Neva Chapter of the American Fisheries Society policy statement.

Click here to download our brochure,
"Mark the Hatchery Fish!"

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