|Adult trap (resistance board weir) in the Elwha River|
The new Elwha weir fished for 30 days in 2010 and captured a total of 492 adult salmon and trout, representing eight different species, including Chinook, pink, chum, coho, and sockeye salmon, steelhead, cutthroat trout, and bull trout. Chinook salmon were captured in the greatest number---461 individuals. Pink salmon were the next most common species captured with 12 individuals. Although the weir was pulled prior to the peak of the coho and chum salmon runs, both species were captured. In addition, summer-run and/or early returning winter-run steelhead were captured. The capture of pink salmon surprised us, since pinks generally return to Puget Sound rivers only during odd years (2009, 2007, etc.). They have, however, become more common during even years over the last decade.
|The weir fishing at 2,200 cfs|
The weir is planned to be re-installed in early 2011 to direct adult steelhead to the river margins where they will be counted using SONAR. The trap boxes will be installed in late winter or early spring to trap adult steelhead. The weir will be removed again during the spring snow melt and then reinstalled with traps as flows begin to decrease in early summer.
This project was funded in part by funds provided to the cooperating agencies as part of their annual budget. Additional funds were obtained through the President’s stimulus program (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act). The project is currently funded through September 30, 2012.
Here are some of the fish captured by the weir: