Federal responsibilities for conservation of the nation's diverse and valuable fishery resources date from 1871 when Congress established the position of Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries in response to concern about the decline in natural food fish supplies. In the Pacific Region Fisheries managers work with many partners to provide hatchery fish production for harvest, monitoring and evaluation of hatchery production programs, and technical assistance to our state, tribal and federal agencies in stock assessment and fishery impact analysis.
||Inter-jurisdictional fisheries management is a collaborative process involving two or more states, nations, or tribal governments with direct management authority.
||The regional goal is to promote quality fishing and other related recreational fisheries enjoyment of aquatic resources on Service lands, on tribal and military lands, and on other waters.
||Mitigation fisheries activities included habitat improvement, native species restoration and stocking native and non-native fish.
||The Fisheries Program plays an integral role in the development of fishery management plans, new fishery management strategies, among other efforts to meet the Service's federal tribal treaty trust.
Responsibility for managing inter-jurisdictional fisheries in the United States is determined by many laws, treaties, and court orders but follows no single implementation model across the Nation. Inter-jurisdictional fisheries management is a collaborative process involving two or more states, nations, or tribal governments with direct management authority. Except for some resident species fisheries, which may be the sole responsibility of the individual states, most Pacific Region fisheries are inter-jurisdictional in nature.
Management of fishery impacts in inter-jurisdictional fisheries is only one component in the overall management framework that affects the ability of naturally spawning fish populations to be maintained at self-sustaining levels. Other management actions such as habitat, hydrosystem, and hatchery production, often can have a greater impact on whether individual fish populations persist at self-sustaining levels. It is therefore necessary to engage management of inter-jurisdictional fishery resources holistically and craft management strategies that address all phases of the life cycle of the population.
The Pacific Region Fisheries Program goal is to support, facilitate, and/or lead collaborative approaches to conserve, and where appropriate, restore sustainable inter-jurisdictional fish populations. Actively promote co-management of inter-jurisdictional fish populations towards mutually defined harvest, production, and escapement goals that recognize mitigation, natural production, and ESA conservation and recovery goals.
The regional goal is to Support, facilitate, and/or lead collaborative approaches to conserve, and where appropriate, restore sustainable inter-jurisdictional fish populations. Actively promote co-management of inter-jurisdictional fish populations towards mutually defined harvest, production, and escapement goals that recognize mitigation, natural production, and ESA conservation and recovery goals.
Recreational, commercial and tribal fishing is deeply woven into the lifestyle and culture of the West Coast. State agencies, and in some case the Tribes, have the regulatory authority for the management of these fisheries, even on federal lands. The Fisheries Program has a long history of supporting state efforts by providing scientific information and services that benefit recreational fisheries on Service lands, on tribal and military lands, and on other waters where the Service has a federal role. This involvement includes sharing biological information and expertise, producing fish, conducting applied research, developing technologies, promoting public education, conducting professional training, and implementing coordination and professional review of programs and publications.
Within its federal role, the Service has a direct responsibility to promote programs on federal lands which provide and enhance recreational opportunities. The Sikes Act, Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956, and the Refuge Recreation Act of 1962 contain authorizations for the entire range of Service fishery management activities of federal lands. The Fisheries Program promotion of recreational fishing opportunities on federal lands has focused on federal lands operated by National Wildlife Refuges and military installations
The regional goal is to promote quality fishing and other related recreational enjoyment of aquatic resources on Service lands, on tribal and military lands, and on other waters where the Service has a role.
When federal water development projects (locks and dams) were constructed, Congress and the federal government committed to mitigating for impacts on recreational, commercial, and tribal fisheries. Mitigation activities included habitat improvement, native species restoration and stocking native and non-native fish.
Fisheries mitigation programs in the Pacific Region generally involve stocking Pacific salmon, steelhead trout, and trout species native to altered watersheds. The majority of the salmon caught by recreational, commercial, and Tribal fishers are propagated species. Considerable reimbursement is provided to the Service for its fisheries mitigation programs in the Pacific Region by the Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, NOAA Fisheries, and the Bonneville Power Administration. However, there are existing facilities and programs that are insufficiently funded to operate and meet Service fisheries goals. In addition, many fishery mitigation plans and goals are not established or clearly defined. Of the facilities the Service operates in the Pacific Region, approximately half are fully funded through reimbursable agreements. The remaining facilities are partially funded with reimbursable dollars. While regional efforts to develop full reimbursement will initially focus on clarifying goals and funding issues, involvement of the DOI, Congress, and the Administration will be required to affect administrative and legislative changes allowing for full cost recovery.
The regional goal is for the Fisheries Program to work with other federal agencies, states, and Tribes to meet mitigation responsibilities, identify mitigation goals and pursue full cost reimbursable funding for the Service’s operation and management of mitigation facilities.
Treaty Trust Fisheries
Most Pacific Region fisheries also have direct or indirect ties to federally recognized Tribes with treaty fishing rights. The management of all interjurisdictional fisheries in the Pacific Region has become greatly influenced by the requirement for adequate protection and rebuilding of species listed under the Endangered Species Act. To meet the Serviceâ€™s federal tribal trust, resource protection, hatchery mitigation, and public benefit responsibilities, the Fisheries Program plays an integral role in the development of fishery management plans, development of new fishery management strategies and evaluation tools, conduct of applied research, and monitoring of harvest allocation and fishery impact limitation compliance. This is in direct support of the states, Tribes, and NOAA Fisheries who have primary regulatory authority in harvest management.