• 2014 Archives: Columbia Basin salmon, steelhead and lamprey in the news

    Stanley, Id., November 24, 2014: Rocky Barker: Sockeye get their wildness back. In his essay, "Walking," Henry David Thoreau wrote, "In Wildness is the preservation of the World."  That sentiment grew into the philosophical foundation on which the modern environmental movement was built.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., October 16, 2014: A salmon-eye view for the one-million plus chinook and coho crossing Bonneville Dam. Northwest RiverPartners recently contracted an underwater video showing both the trip up Tanner Creek into the hatchery and through the Bonneville Dam ladder - from the salmon's point of view.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., October 15, 2014: Northwest salmon numbers surge to the highest level since 1930s. Record numbers of salmon are traversing the Columbia River dam system this fall, leading to the largest reported runs since the1930s.  After a strong year last fall, the growing salmon runs are raising hope the improved fish passages, cold ocean temperatures, and better hatcheries are leading to a resurgence of the Northwest icon.


    Portland, Ore., October 10, 2014: Sturgeon Lake on Sauvie Island faces a grim future without help...which is on the way. Sturgeon Lake is choking to death.  The core of Sauvie Island's refuge for fish and wildlife is slowly filling with silt.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., October 1, 2014: Salmon return to the Columbia River in record numbers. There are reasons why the salmon are plentiful in the Columbia River this year.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., September 30, 2014:  Officials laud record-setting Columbia River salmon run. Officials who monitor salmon counts thought this would be a big year for endangered fish.  But they didn't think it would be this big.  


    Boise, Id., September 22, 2014: Along the Lemhi River, Idaho ranchers making a difference for salmon. The salmon are done spawning on the Lemhi River, and it's been a good year.  The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has counted 239 chinook salmon redds, or nests, in this tributary of the Salmon River, where Lewis and Clark first saw salmon.


    Boise, Id., September 18, 2014: The 2010's have been good for sockeye, fall chinookSuddenly, Lonesome Larry - the lone sockeye that returned in 1992 - seems so long ago.  So what to call his thousands of descendents?  Lots O' Larrys?  The 2014 sockeye run of 1,420 fish has topped the 2010 record of 1,355, and a few stragglers are still showing up.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., September 10, 2014: Record runs cross Bonneville Dam.Since Sunday, more than 180,354 adult fall Chinook have climbed the ladders at Bonneville Lock and Dam on their annual migration into the Columbia River Basin.


    Stanley, Id., September 9, 2014: Snake River sockeye running toward recoveryOnce on the brink of extinction and still too close for comfort, Snake River sockeye surpassed and important milestone this week.  Through Friday, 1,348 sockeye have been trapped in the Sawtooth Basin, the most since the run was placed on regulatory life support and a captive breeding program was initiated more than 20 years ago.


    Portland, Ore., July 24, 2014: Corps extends comment period for Columbia River salmonid predation draft EISThe U.S Army Corps of Engineers has extended the public comment period by 15 days for the draft Environmental Impact Statement to reduce predation on juvenile salmon and steelhead listed under the Endangered Species Act by large population of double-crested cormorants in the Columbia River estuary. 


    Portland, Ore., June 19, 2014: Study looks at off-channel habitat contribution to Columbia River basin salmon production.  Off-channel habitat created in a river's flood plain - sloughs, beaver ponds, wetlands and side channels - can play an important role in salmonid production.  This habitat can improve growth and survival of young salmon, reduce the competition for food and space and keep larger predators away.


    Portland, Ore., June 13, 2014: Corps plan calls for killing half of cormorants on Columbia River island.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced plans Thursday to kill as many as 16,000 double-crested cormorants on East Sand Island at the mouth of the Columbia River over a three-year period.  The corps says the number of the black seabirds has increased dramatically over the past decade, along with the birds' impact on salmon populations. 



    Portland, Ore., June 2, 2014: Why some in the Northwest want more of these jawless, eel-like creatures. Jawless and eel-like with concentric rings of teeth, the Pacific lamprey's unsavory looks may be one reason why populations have declined.  Now, some people are taking charge of restoring the fish.



    Chinook, Wash., May 27, 2014: Isle of hungry birds.  It was the first time the tribal leaders had seen it: a cloud of birds rising over Oregon's East Sand Island, a slight hump of land at the mouth of the Columbia River easily visible from the Port of Chinook.


    Boise, Id., May 21, 2014: Lonesome Larry: The captive breeding program appears to have saved the Snake River sockeye.  A 24-inch sockeye dubbed "Lonesome Larry" became an Idaho icon and a turning point in the effort to save the salmon.


    Juliaetta, Id., May 12, 2014: Snake River fall chinook make a comeback  The fate of the Snake River fall chinook salmon has not garnered the attention of its more famous cousin, the sockeye.  But the comeback of the giant salmon that once spawned as far east as Shoshone Falls and the Boise River has been even more robust than the sockeye's.


    Lewiston, Id., April 20, 2014:  Officials eye improving fall chinook runs  Officials at the fisheries division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are working on a long-rage plan that could lead to delisting fall chinook in the Snake River.

    Lewiston, Id., April 20, 2014: Wild fall chinook almost ready for mainstream  Fisheries biologists say the recent surge in fall chinook returning to the Snake River is exciting, incredible and northing short of amazing.  The numbers are so high that some people are asking what it might take for the threatened species to shed its protected status under the Endangered Species Act.


    Cascade Locks, Ore., April 3, 2014: Smelt make it past Bonneville Dam this yearA few of the huge run of smelt in the Columbia River made it past the Bonneville Dam this year, probably through the locks. State officials believe it's the first time in many years that smelt have traveled above the Dam.


    Yakima, Wash., March 27, 2014: Yakama habitat restoration takes wing. Yakama Nation habitat and channel restoration along Toppenish Creek brings back birds, fish and wapato.

    2014 Press Archives
    2013 Press Archives
    2011-12 Press Archives

  • Columbia Basin Federal Caucus news releases

    Photos, b-roll and more at Resources

    Learn more: Fact Sheets 

    The Columbia Basin Federal Caucus agencies may issue joint news releases on key topics. In addition, individual agencies will issue their own news releases about projects and actions taken to improve conditions for ESA-listed fish and lamprey.

    News releases

    2014 News Releases

    2013 News Releases

    2012 News Releases

    Federal Caucus press contacts

    Michelle Helms
    Bonneville Power  Administration
    (503) 230-​5272
    Michael Milstein
    NOAA Fisheries 
    (503) 231-6268 
    Matt Rabe
    U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
    ​(503) 808-3710
    Erika Lopez 
    U.S. Bureau of Reclamation 
     (208) 378-5020 
    Amanda Smith
    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
    (503) 872-2852
    Stephen Baker
    U.S. Forest Service 
    (503) 808-2220