Porcupine River Chinook Salmon Sonar Program

The Porcupine River has its headwaters in the Yukon, and flows into Alaska before joining the Yukon River at Fort Yukon and hence to the Bering Sea. Chinook, chum and coho salmon return to the Porcupine River to spawn. These transboundary stocks are of importance to both Canada and the U.S.A., and so is the good management of these stocks. This project provides reliable and timely (in-season) information on both Chinook and chum salmon returning to the Porcupine River in Canada, and is the only reliable means of in-season assessment for both Chinook salmon and chum salmon available to US and Canadian fishery managers. Information on returns of these stocks as assessed in the lower Yukon River (i.e., passage of Chinook and chum salmon at Pilot Station in combination with genetic apportionment to the Porcupine River) is available, but is of low reliability and inappropriate for in-season management.

A sonar program has been operating just downstream of Old Crow to determine passage of chum and Chinook salmon since 2011 and 2014 respectively. This proposal combines both the Chinook and chum projects into one project for 2017 to achieve operational efficiencies and cost savings. Fisheries and Oceans Canada also operates a chum salmon enumeration project on the Fishing Branch River – a 14 day travel time upstream from Old Crow. This project provides reliable data as to whether the spawning escapement goal (as set by the Yukon River Panel) is achieved.

The Vuntut Gwitch’in Government (VGG) has been conducting sonar based stock assessment of Chinook salmon at the Old Crow Sonar site on the Porcupine River since 2014. For 2017, this will be combined with Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s chum assessment project to achieve operational efficiencies and cost savings. Fisheries and Oceans Canada also operates a chum salmon enumeration project on the Fishing Branch River – a 14 day travel time upstream from Old Crow. This project provides reliable data as to whether the spawning escapement goal (as set by the Yukon River Panel) is achieved.

CRE-09-17 Assessing Passage of Porcupine River Chi...

CRE-09-16 Porcupine River Chinook Salmon Sonar Pro...

CRE-09-15 Porcupine Chinook Sonar DP_final

CRE-09-14N Porcupine River Chinook Salmon Sonar Pr...