Thursday February 15, 2024

The Chronicle

The state House of Representatives has unanimously passed legislation that would study the effect of avian predation on salmon populations in the state.

House Bill 2293, sponsored by Rep. J.T. Wilcox, R-Yelm, would create an Avian Salmon Predation Work Group with members from federally recognized Indian tribes with treaty fishing rights, commercial and recreational fishers, conservation organizations and state and federal agencies.

“Our state’s failure to effectively recover salmon runs impacts every Washingtonian — from landowners to loggers, farmers to fishers, and everyone in between who relies on healthy salmon populations for their livelihoods, sustenance and cultural heritage,” Wilcox said in a statement. “Understanding the role of avian predation is crucial in our efforts to address this significant challenge, restore our runs, and ensure the sustainable future of salmon in Washington state for generations to come.”

The work group would be tasked with identifying bird species that prey on juvenile salmon, analyzing the effect on population and determining whether the species present a threat to any endangered species.

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