Salmon are the lifeblood of the Salish Sea. More than 137 species depend on salmon, including humans. Yet, over the last 200 years human activity has caused salmon populations to decline drastically. Through a series of short flash talks, 6 experts will share stories about their work discovering innovative ways to help recover Salish Sea salmon populations. A discussion and Q and A with speakers will follow the talks.
Thursday, May 20 at 7pm on Zoom
Registration is Required
$10 suggested donation
Angela Dillon – Puyallup Tribal Member, SEPA Reviewer for Puyallup Tribe Fisheries Department
Puyallup Tribe Fisheries: The culture and conservation of salmon in WRIA 10
Angela will explain the work done by the Puyallup Tribe Fisheries Department on the juvenile salmon smolt traps on the Puyallup and White Rivers, the prey resources study on Clear Creek, and efforts regarding restoration and conservation.
Angela Dillon is a Puyallup Tribal member and SEPA Reviewer for the Puyallup Tribe Fisheries Department. She previously worked as a Stock Assessment Biologist, monitoring juvenile salmon on the Puyallup River. Currently she is researching juvenile salmon diets, invertebrate prey resources, and restoration on Clear Creek, Puyallup WA.
Stephanie Blair, Chelsea Mitchell, WSU Stormwater lab
Coho salmon urban runoff mortality syndrome: how low impact development can solve the problem of toxic stormwater
Urban stormwater runoff is the largest source of pollution entering Puget Sound. Contaminants in urban runoff degrade aquatic ecosystems and are responsible for Urban Runoff Mortality Syndrome (URMS) in coho salmon, killing an estimated 40-90% of returning coho spawners annually in some urban streams before they can spawn. Research collaborations between Washington State University, University of Washington-Tacoma, Center for Urban Waters, National Marine Fisheries Service, and US Fish and Wildlife Service have established a direct link between land use and the prevalence of URMS that is driven by the tire chemical 6PPD-quinone. Low Impact Development technologies such as bioretention, which is designed to restore natural hydrology, can prevent URMS in coho and provide myriad ecological benefits to developed landscapes.
Stephanie is a PhD candidate in the School of the Environment at Washington State University’s Puyallup Research and Extension Center. She investigates the lethal and sublethal biological effects in salmonids exposed to urban runoff pollutants.
Chelsea Mitchell is a PhD candidate and research assistant who studies Low Impact Development at Washington State University’s Puyallup Research and Extension Center. Her research focuses on understanding and improving contaminant removal from stormwater using “green” technologies, such as bioretention and permeable pavements.
Jason Toft – Principal Research Scientist at UW School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences
Nearshore Restoration and Beach Monitoring in Puget Sound
Jason will explore the impact of bulkheads on salmon and the targets for removing bulkheads and restoring shorelines in Puget Sound.
Jason Toft is a principal research scientist at the University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, focusing on nearshore restoration and effects of shoreline armoring in Puget Sound
Tessa Francis, Lead Ecologist at Puget Sound Institute of UW Tacoma
Beyond the beach: Do salmon care about shoreline restoration?
Tessa will share results from a 2-year study of the effects of armor removal on nearshore fish abundance. Her team surveyed nearshore subtidal fish at restored (armor removed), armored, and natural shorelines of 6 sites around the Salish Sea, finding no effect of shoreline structure on salmonid abundance. Herring and smelt were more abundant at natural or armored shorelines. They found no positive effects of shoreline restoration on nearshore subtidal fish abundance.
Tessa is lead ecologist at the Puget Sound Institute of UW Tacoma and managing director of the Ocean Modeling Forum. Her work focuses on linking science to decision-making, the ecology and conservation of coastal ecosystems, and the dynamics at the terrestrial-aquatic interface. At home she is raising an ever-increasing number of organisms, including 2 humans, 2 goats, 2 bunnies, 8 chickens, a Labrador retriever, a Russian tortoise, and a cat.
Joseph Bogaard – Executive Director, Save Our Wild Salmon
Restoring the lower Snake River – our best opportunity to recover endangered salmon and orcas
Joseph will provide an introduction to the lower Snake River and its historic salmon populations; discuss how salmon connect to human and non-human communities across the PNW; describe the tremendous restoration opportunity before us today – and explain how people can help.
Joseph has worked for the Save Our Wild Salmon Coalition (SOS) since 1996. He first got hooked on salmon restoration efforts while in graduate school where he authored a paper in the 1990s, exploring the then-relatively recent Snake River salmon listings under the Endangered Species Act. Before joining SOS, Joseph spent years teaching and working in the forests and mountains of the West.
Living Waters is a partnership between Vashon Center for the Arts, Vashon Nature Center, Vashon Heritage Museum and the Natural History Museum to increase public awareness of efforts to restore the health of salmon, whales, and the Salish Sea.