The CFC proposes to release 750,000 juvenile hatchery-origin Central Valley fall-run Chinook Salmon into Pillar Point Harbor in 2022, 2023 and 2024. Juvenile salmon will be fractionally tagged with a Coded-Wire Tag (CWT) and marked with an adipose fin-clip at a rate of 25% of the total number of released fish, which matches requirements for mitigation and enhancement fish. The CFC, in anticipation of fish delivery from MOK to the Pillar Point Harbor, has secured necessary equipment. CFC is prepared to provide both staffing and logistical support to facilitate release of fish at the Project location. This includes necessary boats provided and operated by CFC to assist with net pen movement and release of smolts.
CFC will provide, assemble, and deploy a floating net pen that has an inner net to contain juvenile salmon, an outer net to exclude predators, and overall net to exclude birds, and an automated feeder. Fish will be delivered from the MOK on a weekly basis in increments of approximately 250,000 fish using CDFW hatchery trucks. Once fish are delivered into the net pen, it will be towed by CFC volunteers to an existing mooring location in outer Pillar Point Harbor. Fish will be acclimated in the floating net pen for 5 days at which point, CFC will tow the net pen outside of the harbor and the inner net will be removed to allow the juvenile salmon to escape into the ocean. The fish will be released in the outer harbor on an outgoing tide to facilitate their rapid exit to the ocean and to minimize in-harbor predation. CFC will then tow the net pen back to Johnson Pier for the next delivery, or if all deliveries have been completed, to the Pillar Point launch ramp for cleaning, disassembly, and storage.
CFC Chinook Salmon Coastal Release Project in Pillar Point Harbor will release 750,000 fish each year, in the spring of 2022, 2023 and 2024. This project is contingent upon CDFW approval after completion of CEQA. Project results will be assessed using data acquired from CDFW landings, carcass surveys, and monitoring programs.