Annual Report 2008



  Contents  Introduction  EECM  Tripartite Meeting  |  RPCM  16th Annual Meeting BASIS Symposium  |  People & Events  |  Appendices 


1. Time and Place of the Meeting
2. Participants
3. Research Plans and Cruise     Activities
       (a) National Research Plans  
       (b) Cruise Plans  
              United States  
4. Exchange Samples and Data
5. Sub-Committee and Working     Group Reports
6. Scientific Information for     Enforcement Activities
3. 2008 National Research Plans and Cruise Activities
(a)    National Research Plans
Canada stated that the Canadian National Research Plan remains unchanged from those in the past several years.

Canada conducts and publishes studies on the biology and ecology of Pacific salmon to support the conservation and management of the stocks as well as to foster and contribute to international cooperative research.  Areas of research include the impacts of climate change on salmon production, stock and species identification using DNA techniques, and studies on the biology, physiology and ecology of Pacific salmon.

The Japanese National Research Plan was submitted at the 15th (2007) Annual Meeting (Doc. 1073, pages 1617), and no changes to the research plan are expected until 2010.  The sampling stations and other details may be adjusted from year to year but those changes will be reported each year.

Korea reported that there are no changes to the Korean National Research Plan submitted at the 15th Annual Meeting (Docs. 1054 and 1073, pages 1718).

There will be no changes to the Russian National Research Plan submitted at the 15th Annual Meeting (Docs. 1019 and 1073, pages 1819) as it is for 5 years.

The United States Research Plan remains the same as that which was submitted at the 15th Annual Meeting (Doc. 1073, pages 2021).

The Chairman suggested the Parties submit their 2009 National Research Plans to the Secretariat in advance of the 2008 Annual Meeting.


(b)    Cruise Plans
Canada provided cruise plans for 20082009 by W.E. Ricker.  Three surveys have been planned by the Canadian Program on High Seas Salmon for 20082009: a summer survey on June 18 July 6, 2008, a fall survey on October 7 November 15, 2008, and a winter survey on February 24 March 24, 2009.  The primary objectives of these surveys will be to (1) collect biological information on Pacific salmon and associated epipelagic fish community, (2) describe the ambient oceanographic conditions, and (3) quantify the biomass of zooplankton and describe the zooplankton species community composition in the coastal waters of British Columbia and Southeast Alaska.

In addition to the cruises described in document 1092, the Pacific Biological Station (PBS) will be conducting two major surveys (W.E. Ricker) as part of the Strait of Georgia Salmon Program in 2008-2009.  The areas covered will include Queen Charlotte Strait and Sound and the surrounding inlets, the Strait of Georgia and surrounding inlets, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Puget Sound.  The objectives of both surveys include: (1) collection of data on juvenile Pacific salmon abundance, size, distribution, and diet; (2) investigation of the relationships between these factors and trends in survival; (3) investigation of the influences of climate and ocean conditions throughout the North Pacific on trends in the survival of juvenile Pacific salmon; and (4) the influences of climate and ocean conditions on North Pacific marine ecosystems.  As in 20032007, focus studies will continue to assess the potential impacts of sea lice on juvenile salmon growth and survival in the Broughton Archipelago (Knight and Kingcome Inlets) and surrounding (Rivers and Smith Inlets, Queen Charlotte Sound) areas.  Otoliths and scales, and some clips for DNA analysis are collected from sub-samples of salmon catches.  All coho and Chinook salmon are checked for coded-wire tags (CWTs), with positives returned to PBS for decoding and identification.  All non-salmonid fishes are identified to the species level, life stage if possible, and enumerated.  Size (fork lengths) and diet data are collected on non-salmonids when time permits.  Within the Strait of Georgia component of the surveys, plankton samples will continue to be collected via bongo nets at a number of standard sitesFinally, oceanographic data (salinity and temperature) are collected at least three times per day throughout all regions during the surveys, as well as at the plankton stations.  Both surveys are conducted using a mid-water trawl, although parallel troll and seine surveys may also be conducted in the Broughton region as part of the sea lice research program.

The migration of juvenile salmon will also be studied on the west coast of North America, as part of the Pacific Ocean Shelf Tracking project (POST).  Salmon smolts will be surgically tagged using small acoustic tags in rivers that drain into the Strait of Georgia such as the Fraser River.  In 2008, acoustic receivers will be again placed across the continental shelf from Washington State to Alaska and across the Strait of Georgia in a series of lines to track the movement of tagged salmon More details regarding this project can be found at and at


Japan reviewed salmon research cruise plans scheduled for the 2008/2009 fiscal year (Doc. 1085) and research cruises that may involve incidental takes of salmon (Doc.1084).  Hokko maru will conduct trawl sampling to survey the distribution, abundance and other biological characteristics of salmon in the North Pacific and Bering Sea basin during summer 2008.  The survey will include a gear calibration effort between trawl (Hokko maru) and research gillnets (Wakatake maru).  Wakatake maru will conduct traditional monitoring of salmon and their habitats in the central North Pacific and Bering Sea between early June and mid July.  Oshoro maru will conduct an oceanographic and biological survey in the western North Pacific Ocean on May 720, and in the central North Pacific, Bering Sea and Chukchi Sea between June 2 and July 31.  Kaiun maru will conduct research with gillnets to examine the distribution and ecology of neon flying squid, salmon and other pelagic fishes in the western and central North Pacific Ocean from early July to early August.


Russia described their research cruise plans (Doc. 1095).  The main objective of their summer cruises is to study the return of salmon and their migrating routes in the North Pacific, Okhotsk Sea and western Bering Sea.  SakhNIRO will conduct surveys of juvenile salmon near Sakhalin.  KamchatNIRO will conduct trawl surveys near Kamchatka shores to predict the life history and behaviour of pink salmon.


United States
The United States presented cruise plans for the eastern Bering Sea (Doc. 1093) and Southeast Alaska coastal monitoring (SECM) for 2008 (Doc. 1094).  The NOAA ship Oscar Dyson will be used to collect biological information on ecologically important fish species and provide descriptions of the physical and biological oceanographic conditions of the eastern Bering Sea waters during the fall of 2008.  SECM research is scheduled to be conducted at four intervals from late May to late August at 13 core stations in the northern region of Southeast Alaska, and at eight stations in the southern region of Southeast Alaska during June and July.  This sampling schedule is similar to that of 2005, 2006, and 2007.  One additional component will involve another inter-vessel calibration of CPUE with the NOAA ship John N. Cobb and the RV Medeia in July.

The United States will continue the research in the Beaufort Sea this summer.  The United States may have to take opportunities to collect data using other observer cruises.  The United States invited two to three scientists on Oscar Dyson.

John N. Cobb will be decommissioned this fall and the United States is trying to obtain a vessel to replace John N. Cobb, however, the Medeia will be contracted until a replacement vessel is identified.


There will be four research plans for efforts focused on coastal areas on juvenile distribution, zooplankton biomass, nutrients, water properties such as temperature, salinity, etc. (Doc. 1054).  The research may be adjusted depending on weather conditions.


4. Exchange of Biological Samples and Data
List of requests for samples and data is appended as Appendix 5.



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