What We Do

Two million upriver bright fall Chinook salmon are reared and released from Willard National Fish Hatchery with funds provided by Mitchell Act, administered by NOAA-Fisheries. Adults return to Drano Lake and are a perfect example of a successful mitigation program. These fish provide sport and tribal harvest opportunities by mitigating for fisheries lost due to the construction and operation of large scale hydropower projects on the Columbia River.

We also rear 850,000 coho salmon in agreement with the Yakama Nation. 

Spring: Coho smolts transferred to Mid-Columbia drainages for acclimation and release. Care for coho, bull trout and up-river bright (URB) fall Chinook fry.

Summer: Sub-yearling URB fall Chinook and coho fry are tagged to provide information for the fishery. URB sub-yearlings are released in July. Care for coho and bull trout.

Fall: Assist with spawning at complex hatcheries. Care for coho. Incubate and care for URB eggs at Carson Depot Springs (CDS) facility. Collect data on bull trout experimental fish.

Winter: Receive and incubate eyed coho eggs from Yakama Nation and URB eggs. Transfer swim-up fry from CDS to Willard for early rearing. Receive and incubate bull trout eggs. Care for coho pre-smolts.

Management and Conservation

The next time you go fishing, you might just catch a fish that was raised at Willard National Fish Hatchery. Since 1871, National Fish Hatcheries have been responding to conservation challenges affecting America’s fish and other aquatic species. Producing fish continues to be an irreplaceable tool in managing or restoring fisheries along with habitat conservation. In doing so, we help provide recreation opportunities to America’s 34 million anglers who spend $36 billion annually in pursuit of their favored pastime.