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Word Count: 812
Hatcheries Once the Answer Now the Problem Throughout the last 150 years salmon populations have been continuously dropping originally because of the rampant overfishing of the late 19th century and currently because of habitat loss due to hydropower dams and poor logging practices The primary intervention used to increase the salmon population has been hatcheries It was thought that they would solve the problem of decreased salmon populations hatcheries actually lead to the destruction and decline of wild salmon stocks There are unfortunately many consequence now realized about salmon hatcheries Little scientific research was done about the future populations of salmon and the genetic effects the hatcheries would have Therefore statistics in regards to their future populations could not be found The initial problem with the hatchery approach is that instead of dealing with the reasons behind the depletion of salmon we developed a quick fix Essentially instead of cleaning up the rivers and reducing dams on major migratory paths we decided to grow our own salmon to replace the dying species In 1948 Paul Needham Oregons Chief of Fisheries publicly announced the idea that hatcheries can take the place of natural production of salmon The Science journal states in 1977 that man should view edible aquatic products including salmon as fruits of a system that not only can be exploited but whose management can be planned and controlled at every level of the production pyramid What we have found is that although hatchery salmon may look like wild salmon genetically they are a hybrid In fact it has been proposed to take the hatchery type of salmon off of the endangered species list because they are so genetically different from the native salmon species In the 1970s scientists realized that they knew little about the genetics of the salmon They were mainly interested in manipulating the genetics to develop a salmon that would almost certainly be able to select for physiologically superior
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