As of May 15th, 2019, according to Idaho Fish and Game, zero spring run Chinook Salmon have been caught by anglers. Leading Idaho Fish and Game to outright close the spring Chinook salmon due to fears that broodstock returns of fish will not show up.
From KIVI Boise:
“COLUMBIA RIVER BASIN — Salmon seasons have been open in Idaho since April, but you wouldn’t know it. Not a single spring Chinook has been caught according to Fish and Game records, and Tuesday the Idaho Fish and Game Commission voted to close the season on all rivers in the Clearwater Basin. Fisheries managers are projecting that the number of spring Chinook returning to hatcheries in the Clearwater Basin will not meet broodstock needs.
The closure comes in the midst of a salmon crisis for Idaho Anglers, and a financial crisis for The Bonneville Power Administration”
According to some in the region, the Bonneville Dam is no longer financially viable as it is losing market share for the power it generates to cheaper alternate energy options.
According to Economist Tony Jones, “It’s what economists call a death spiral. As customers leave because of high prices, prices go up further, causing more customers to leave the market, driving prices up further, which encourages more customers to buy less and less power, so it’s a spiral that feeds back on itself.”
To read more about the Bonneville Dam and its effects on salmon returns, check the full article out on KIVI Boise.
Source: KIVI Boise.