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Origin of Juvenile Chum Salmon from Gulf of Alaska Coastal Waters, '01


Juvenile chum salmon collections taken during the July-August 2001 OCC/GLOBEC research cruise along Gulf of Alaska transects.  An X indicates a station where no chum salmon were caught; circles, the size of which represent catch size, indicate stations where juvenile chum salmon were caught.

Previous migration models of juvenile chum salmon in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) indicate a counter-clockwise movement pattern where the juveniles migrate along the GOA continental shelf corridor, typically north and then west, before entering offshore waters in fall and winter. Little is known, however, about many of the specific aspects of this migration such as migration rates, the abundance and distribution of specific stock-groupings along this corridor, and point of debarkation where the juveniles move from coastal to offshore waters.

In the past several years, new survey and laboratory methods employed by the Auke Bay Laboratory’s (ABL) Ocean Carrying Capacity Program (OCC) in conjunction with oceanographic investigations through GLOBEC (Global Ocean Ecosystem Dynamics) research initiatives have overcome key data limitations encountered by previous research, thereby allowing new insight into salmon migration characteristics in the GOA.  

In this report, Christine Kondzela and Richard Wilmot of the ABL's OCC Program provide updated information on salmon migration patterns in the GOA, relying upon migration and distribution data from thermally marked chum salmon hatchery stocks and the first genetic stock identification analysis of juvenile salmon migrating through this coastal corridor.

More (.pdf, 300KB)>.

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