Pacific Salmon Foundation: Salmon Watersheds Program

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The Status of Steelhead Populations in BC: 2024 Snapshot Report

published year 2024
document type conservation unit snapshot
species steelhead
location British Columbia
subjects habitat, pressure indicators, cumulative effects, Conservation Units, biological status, spawner trends, smolt abundance, stock-recruitment, exploitation rate, survey streams, indicators, benchmarks
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This report describes the methods and results of a project to develop snapshots of the status of 36 steelhead Conservation Units in British Columbia. These status snapshots summarize the best available data for describing the dynamics and characteristics of steelhead populations and their habitats.

Steelhead hold deep social, cultural, and economic significance among communities across BC. However, in the last three decades growing conservation concerns for steelhead have become more pronounced, highlighted by the well-known declines in abundance among interior Fraser River populations. Meanwhile, a lack of accessible, centralized information about the status of steelhead in BC hinders our ability to determine whether this is an isolated case or if similar declines are occurring broadly among steelhead populations across BC. To address this issue, the Pacific Salmon Foundation’s Salmon Watersheds Program collaborated with the Gitanyow Fisheries Authority, Nisga’a Lisims Government, University of BC, Simon Fraser University, the Province of BC, and Fisheries and Oceans Canada to characterize status and trends for all steelhead populations across BC and improve access to this information.

Full results for each Conservation Unit can be found on the Pacific Salmon Explorer, an online data visualization tool developed by the Pacific Salmon Foundation.