Return of a giant: Coordinated conservation leads to the first wild reproduction of Lahontan Cutthroat Trout in the Truckee River in nearly a century

Fisheries
By: , and 

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Abstract

Many freshwater fish populations have been greatly reduced, with particular loss of migratory fishes. Recovering depleted populations is challenging as threats are often plentiful and complex, especially in arid environments where demands for water resources are high. Here, we describe how a collaborative, multifaceted approach has spurred natural reproduction—a major step towards Lahontan Cutthroat Trout Oncorhynchus clarkii henshawi (LCT) recovery in Pyramid Lake and the Truckee River, Nevada, once home to one of largest freshwater salmonids in North America. The factors limiting LCT were immense, including habitat fragmentation, degradation, and non‐native species attributes common in the declines of native salmonids. Yet for the first time in over 80 years and each year since 2014, adfluvial LCT have spawned in the lower Truckee River, resulting in the production of tens of thousands of young‐of‐year. The progress and positive trajectory towards recovery were driven by a holistic view of the Truckee River watershed beginning in the early 1990's that envisioned bringing numerous conservation building blocks together to expedite the conservation and recovery for the listed fishes of Pyramid Lake. Although additional challenges remain, the LCT recovery program in the Truckee River basin provides a template for the conservation of imperiled fishes.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Return of a giant: Coordinated conservation leads to the first wild reproduction of Lahontan Cutthroat Trout in the Truckee River in nearly a century
Series title Fisheries
DOI 10.1002/fsh.10350
Volume 45
Issue 2
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher American Fisheries Society
Contributing office(s) Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center
Description 11 p.
First page 63
Last page 73
Country United States
State Nevada
Other Geospatial Truckee River
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