Dear Mrs. Pendergast,
I am sure you have received a lot of communications regarding opinions why your corporation should or should not remove the dams along the Klamath River.
I believe that the dams should NOT be removed.
I have looked at river concerns myself and prepared some PowerPoint presentations of my findings. They can be found at http://www.klamathbasincrisis.org.
In my report on ocean conditions and salmon survival you will note that Chinook salmon returns to the Iron Gate Fish Hatchery had an average 2% per year increase for 24-years (from about 1962 to 1985). Around 1985-1987 ocean conditions seemed to have changed in such a way as to cause great salmon mortality and low salmon returns.
I also found that the hatchery selected the fish from the earliest runs to propagate. This in turn caused the runs to arrive earlier. Consequently more salmon are arriving during the warm water month of August that would have occurred naturally before hatchery intervention.
In my report on the 2002 fish die-off on the lower Klamath you will find that I believe that toxic chemicals rather than warm water caused the fish KILL. There was the report of a meth lab dump in Ohpah Creek (confluent to the Klamath River) and approximately 97% of the fish that died were below this confluence.
Furthermore, in a statement by Harold Tripp, Traditional Fisherman and Cultural Technician with the Karuk Department of Natural Resources he said that „Last year, all the fish were sick I could tell because they were bleeding, every time they hit the net they would be bleeding before you clubbed them. And after the river came up, about ten days later the fish got better. So I think that if they wouldn‚t have released the water I think a lot more than 30,000 fish would have wound up dying. They had some kind of big boils on them and some of them, had blisters‰.
THE CONDITION OF THE FISH DESCRIBED BY MR. TRIPP IS NOT LIKELY CAUSED FROM WARM WATER. And gill disease is not coupled with external damage to the fishes skin surface area.
You have, of course, been subjected to a great deal of mis-information. I hope to balance what you have received with some factual data which I have made every endeavor to provide citations so the information can be verified.
I hope you will take the time to read through these presentations.
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