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Hatcheries Research
Findings and Updates

Prince William Sound Science Center (PWSSC), and its sub-contracting partner Sitka Sound Science Center (SSSC), have been engaged in scientific data collection and analysis services requested under the State of Alaska contract IHP-13-013 entitled "Interactions of Wild and Hatchery Pink and Chum Salmon in Prince William Sound and Southeast Alaska". This contract expired in March, 2016, and work is continuing under a new State of Alaska contract (CT 160001756) with PWSSC with funding now provided solely by salmon processors and fishery enhancement organizations.

The overarching purposes of this research are to: 1) further document the degree to which hatchery pink and chum salmon straying is occurring; 2) assess the range of interannual variability in the straying rates; and, 3) determine the effects of hatchery fish spawning with wild populations on the fitness of wild populations.

This research project has been subdivided into four major activities for implementation, each with a separate project leader: ocean sampling near PWS; stream sampling in PWS; stream sampling in SEAK; and data management, analysis, and reporting.

Written reports

Reports made to ADF&G, as described in the Request for Proposal (RFP), will be posted below. Reports will consist of a complete description of preceding field data methods and the data collected. Reports will include any analyses that can be made with the data available up to that time. Reports will be progressive, i.e., will include all data and analyses from the beginning of the project up to the date of the report.


Pink spawning stream

Alaska Hatchery Research Project workshops will be held periodically to provide the public and department an overview of the progress made and challenges encountered, and so that mid-course adjustments can made if necessary. The agenda and presentations from workshops are posted here for your information.

March 5, 2016

December 12, 2014

Technical Documents

Technical documents (Tech Docs) are produced by ADF&G Gene Conservation Lab (GCL), Mark Tag and Age Lab (MTA) and the Cordova Otolith Lab to describe and document procedures and protocols utilized to process samples and data for the Alaska Hatchery Research Project. Tech Docs are also utilized to document decision points throughout the project. As Tech Docs are finalized they will be posted here.

  1. Defining Relative Reproductive Success: Which Fish Count (PDF 591 kB)
  2. Parentage SNP Selection - SEAK Chum (PDF 503 kB)
  3. Evaluation of Tissue Quality for Pedigree Samples Collected in 2013 (PDF 563 kB)
  4. Effect of Sampling Proportion on Parentage Assignment (PDF 331 kB)
  5. Advanced Parentage Simulations: the Statistical Power to Measure Relative Reproductive Success (PDF 2,948 kB)
  6. AHRP Technical Meeting Dec 16 2014 Minutes (PDF 238 kB)
  7. Thermal Mark Recovery Procedures of the ADF&G Mark, Tag and Age Laboratory (PDF 1,150 kB)
  8. Thermal Mark Recovery Data Quality Assurance and Quality Control Procedures, ADF&G Mark, Tag and Age Laboratory (PDF 678 kB)
  9. Region 1 Scale Aging Laboratory - Data Flow and Scale Aging Procedures (PDF 319 kB)
  10. AHRP Data Flow (PDF 402 kB)
  11. Prioritization of Pink Salmon Samples and Analyses 2015/2016 (PDF 356 kB)
  12. Otolith Processing and Quality Control Methods, ADF&G Cordova Otolith Laboratory (PDF 325 kB)
  13. Experimental Design of Pink Salmon SNP Discovery (PDF 480 kB)
  14. Population Genetic Structure of Odd-Year Pink Salmon from Prince William Sound, 2013 (PDF 1,646 kB)

Final Results

Loading incubators with salmon eggs

The long-term research project proposed here has the potential to answer some of the questions most relevant to the Alaska salmon enhancement program. As good stewards of wild salmon stocks and the natural resources of the state, ADF&G believes strongly this work should be undertaken. It recognizes that the results will likely have some ambiguity and may even be interpreted differently by some groups. Nonetheless, this information will likely guide future decisions and will greatly advance the understanding of the ecological and evolutionary dynamics of wild and hatchery interactions.