As is the case with other Northwest states, the Oregon Legislature has financial control over the state's fish and wildlife agency. For that reason, salmon and steelhead advocates in Oregon will be testifying Wednesday, January 18th (beginning at 8:30 AM PST) before the Legislature, hoping to convince those who hold the pursestrings that the State's current hatchery salmon and steelhead operations are in fact a poor use of financial resources, one that is actually imperiling the remaining native salmon and steelhead.
Legislators will hear from a former assistant director of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Natural Resource Economist Dr. Hans Radtke, Senior Biologist from the Northwest Power and Conservation Council Dr. Peter Paquet, as well as Jim Lichatowich whose SALMON WITHOUT RIVERS has become the book on salmon and steelhead conservation in the 21st century.
Those who are interested in listening to the testimony can visit: http://www.leg.state.or.us/listn/
UPDATED at 12:45 PST Jan 17: Word of this unique legislative event has spread among the anti-wild fish crowds, and these folks are organizing a rally on the capital steps in Salem, OR tomorrow morning during the testimony. Though their positions lack scientific support, they might just succeed in drawing attention away from the experts inside.
Wild salmon and steelhead supporters are organizing their own counter-rally at this very moment. Please, if you or someone you know will be in the area, join us at the Oregon capital building tomorrow morning at 8 AM. Some signs will be available, but feel free to bring your own. Maybe something along the lines of "Wild is the Future" or "Hatcheries Hurt Salmon."
Let's not miss this opportunity to help wild salmon and steelhead. They're depending on us.