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Auke Creek Station

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Auke Creek Station
Auke Creek Station

Auke Creek originates as the outflow stream from Auke Lake, and flows a short distance into Auke Bay adjacent to Auke Bay Marine Station. Auke Creek Station, including a two-way fish counting weir and an experimental hatchery, is located at the mouth of the stream at the head of tidewater. This stream supports anadromous runs of pink, chum, sockeye, and coho salmon, Dolly Varden, cutthroat and steelhead trout where studies have been underway for the past 40 years.

These runs are a valuable resource providing significant contributions to commercial and recreational fisheries in the region. The long-term time series of data at Auke Creek play a critical role in understanding how climate change impacts salmonid behavior and population dynamics. Ecological research at Auke Creek also provides for the specialized training of fisheries scientists and technicians. Because these fish occur in the midst of an urban area, they also provide valuable educational opportunities for general public.

The two-way weir allows complete enumeration of all downstream migrant juvenile salmonids and upstream migrant adults, allowing calculations of both freshwater and marine survival of anadromous stocks using this system. These types of population dynamics data are not commonly available around the Pacific Rim and are important resources for study of long-term ecological changes including impacts, if any, on fishery resources from climate changes.

Auke Creek Station

Auke Creek Station is owned by the National Marine Fisheries Services (NMFS) and is operated on a cooperative basis with both University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G). NMFS scientists coordinate activities at Auke Creek Station involving other agencies. An annual interagency meeting on research projects and activities sets research priorities and NMFS provides an updated report of historical and current fish counts of juvenile and adult salmonid migrations. These reports, covering nearly 40 years of data, include information on daily migrations of each species using this system along with environmental data on water temperatures, freeze up, and ice out on Auke Lake. Over 25 graduate students have conducted their thesis research at Auke Creek Station.

John Joyce
Auke Bay Laboratories
Alaska Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries

Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute
17109 Pt Lena Loop Rd
Juneau AK 99801
(907) 789-6618

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