Bristol Bay Management Area
Fishing Research

Lower Talarik Creek Project

Lower Talarik Creek, a tributary of Lake Iliamna, supports a spawning population of rainbow trout during April and May. Since the spring of 2009 the Division of Sport Fish has used a weir to count migrating rainbow trout. Sport Fish Division staff use the weir to count the number of rainbow trout that migrate in and out of the creek during the spring from late April to early June. Radio telemetry indicates that some rainbow trout enter Lower Talarik Creek during the fall and overwinter in the drainages headwater lakes and that some fish migrate into the creek while ice is still present. The weir cannot be deployed until the creek is free of ice; therefore an accurate count of rainbow trout that migrate into the creek to spawn is not possible. However, the majority of rainbow trout that have completed spawning migrate out of Lower Talarik Creek into Iliamna Lake by June 8. As a result, the number of post spawn out migrants can be assessed. Since 2009 an average of 370 post spawn rainbow trout have migrated from Lower Talarik Creek. Every rainbow trout that is passed through the weir is measured, identified as a sexually mature (spawning) fish and tagged with a green tag near the dorsal fin. The average length of spawning rainbow trout during has been approximately 570 mm from tip of nose to fork of tail (FL) which is approximately 23.5 inches total length (TL). The largest fish measured during this time frame was 746 mm (FL) which is over 30 inches in total length. In addition to sexually mature rainbow trout up to 350 immature rainbow trout, 670 Arctic Grayling and 6,150 longnose sucker have been counted through the weir. This project is expected to continue for the next couple of years.