Shasta River

General Information:

The Department is currently monitoring adult and juvenile salmon and steelhead in the Shasta River Watershed. A video weir is utilized to count returning adult Chinook and coho salmon during the fall, and an outmigrant trap is operated from late winter through early summer to estimate numbers of out-migrant juveniles. The pairing of adult and juvenile data allows for estimation of the number of salmon and steelhead produced within the Shasta River basin compared to those produced outside of the basin. The out-of-basin production ratios are integral in providing context to adult abundance, and the in-river production ratios are critical for evaluating changes to freshwater conditions for salmon and steelhead. Recently, research at the Shasta River has grown to include a tagging study which allows the Department to identify key rearing locations so that survival estimates can be determined by stream reach and time, as well as to elucidate seasonal movements of juveniles within the watershed. This information has greatly improved our understanding of juvenile salmon and steelhead needs in this area. To improve estimates of returning adult steelhead which enter the river later than Chinook and coho salmon, the Department has deployed a sonar camera for the past two years at the mouth of the Shasta River in addition to operating the video camera.

PIT tagging allows analysis of seasonal
movement of juvenile coho salmon.

Photo courtesy of CDFW.