The Department of Fish and Wildlife just released results from a monthly, two year survey of Washington’s outer coast which identifies forage fish spawning grounds. Results from each year were integrated to provide a comprehensive evaluation of all seasons.
- Sampled 89% of possible spawning habitat on the outer coast,
- Documented 40 spawning sites,
- Found smelt eggs at 32 sites
- Classified 20 sites as surf smelt spawning grounds,
- Documented 10 new spawning sites,
- Discovered several spawning events occurring during the spawning season.
Forage fish play a critical role in the marine food web as mid-level pray and are harvested by subsistence, recreational, and commercial fishers in Washington. In recognition that coastal Indian Tribes are co-managers, surveys were collaboratively conducted with members and employees of the Hoh, Makah, Quileute Indian Tribes, and Quinault Indian Nation.