Back to Court?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Chris Johnson, Jul 10, 2014.

  1. Shut the place down, open the Icicle so the fish can get up stream, and let the fish take care of themselves
  2. Why don't they work WITH the hatcheries, instead of against them?
  3. “Over the past fifteen years we have worked with local citizens and representatives of state, federal, and tribal agencies to try to get the Leavenworth Hatchery to comply with state and federal law to protect and restore native fish species listed under the ESA and to restore the integrity of the Icicle Creek ecosystem. It is discouraging to realize that yet again the Hatchery blatantly disregards its legal obligations and the needs of the Icicle Creek ecosystem. The saddest part of this is the public is unknowingly paying for it.”
  4. What rivers do these hatchery fish go into? Is it just Icicle creek?

    Maybe this is just a negotiation tactic? It seems like the lawsuits create such a huge uproar that they should only be used for extreme examples with large impacts.
  5. I read the words for "working with" but where's proof of the actions of "working with"? I haven't seen anything other than lawsuits in the past 15 years. I have never felt that WFC had my best interests at heart.
  6. I think that's because it's the wild fish conservancy and not the zen leecher aka bill w conservancy, or even the wild fish angler conservancy.
    Andrew Shoemaker likes this.
  7. Not sure, but it looks like it's because there is more money in litigation. Litigation settlements look like an important revenue source for WFC.

  8. My thoughts also. I think WFC missed a perfect opportunity a couple of years ago when the indians built a chinook salmon hatchery at Bridgeport.
  9. Maybe I should just start bowling?
  10. You any good at it ??
    constructeur likes this.
  11. Not disagreeing but wondering what makes you think that? I looked up their financials in Guidestar. The fiscal year 2012 990 is posted but 2013 isn't up yet. They had $2.1M in total revenue of which $1.87M was government grants, they had $250K in Program Service Revenue which they describe in PVIII2a as "Resource Preservation". Is that litigation settlements? Doesn't sound like it but dunno... If so, it'd be about 12% of their revenue. That's pretty much it for 2012.

    In the earlier 2014 lawsuit, they got $45K for legal fees but that's not so material, especially as an expense offset and they were paid directly to the lawyers (of course...).
    Chris Johnson likes this.
  12. Thanks, Thomas. Some folks just don't seem to like facts getting in the way of their preconceived notions of this organization. Question their motives and effectiveness all you want, but suggesting WFC does this for the money they recover in these sorts of lawsuits is laughable. Salmo, you of all people ought to know better.
    Tim Cottage likes this.
  13. Thomas Mitchell and O mykiss,

    I would know better if I knew for sure. IIRC I read the other day that WFC has filed numerous lawsuits - I think a number was listed, but I don't remember it. All things considered, litigation for revenue isn't a bad strategy for some organizations. In terms of the actual fish conservation achieved through these lawsuits, I think some cynicism is justified. This present suit is an excellent example. For instance:

    Does Leavenworth hatchery harm wild fish? Yes.
    How? There is an impassible fish barrier downstream of the unscreened or inadequately screened hatchery water supply intake.
    If those problems were corrected, would wild fish populations benefit? Yes.
    How much? Not much.
    Explanation? The barrier blocks access to many miles of "pristine" habitat. While it's true that the habitat is nearly pristine, it is steep gradient, cold most of the year, and of low productivity. Therefore wild fish productivity won't increase significantly when these problems are corrected. That could be the very reason these improvements weren't the highest priority, if limited funds could be more productively spent elsewhere.

    sopflyfisher likes this.
  14. well, if its like spring chinook on the Nooksack, a lot of what hatches out of the gravel in that steep gradient water moves downstream to better rearing water pretty quickly. You cant just look at it from a rearing capability. The fact that its COLD all year makes it PERFECT for bull trout that are the most succeptible to warm water conditions for eggs/fry. PLUS, with the influx of extra eggs/carcasses, the productivity goes up. Theres been a ton of studies supporting exactly this. Chinook and bulls are probably best suited to taking advantage of the steeper gradient too...
  15. SS,

    Of course juvenile spring chinook would move downstream due to the small amount of fry colonization habitat in the spring in particular. And when those spring chinook fry move downstream, they will find most of the suitable habitat occupied by spring chinook fry from other, more productive spawning and rearing habitat, like lower Icicle Creek and Nason Creek and White Creek.

    Icicle Creek is nearly perfect for bull trout. Productivity is low, but otherwise it is nearly perfect. Steelhead might do better in upper Icicle Creek; there already is a resident rainbow population, probably related to the endemic steelhead population. Chinook productivity drops off markedly when stream gradient exceeds 1.5%.


  16. Hi Salmo.

    I've benefited enough from your posts over the years and acknowledge my own ignorance on fisheries biology (trying to fix that though) such that I take your opinion very seriously. However, my expertise is in the world of non-profit finance with a fair amount of focus on helping small non-profits become sustainable so that their good work persists in the field. I have yet to come across an organization with litigation revenue as a revenue stream in a long-term business model. Unless there were some sort of compensation over and above legal fees, I'm having difficulty seeing how it would work. For example in the current lawsuit, it appears the $45K in restitution that the WFC gained was paid directly to their lawyers. But who knows, maybe they have come up with an innovative business model around litigation? I hope not...

    Where success in legal actions might be more important is in securing funding from other sources by demonstrating that they can drive change. If there is a constituency aligned with the WFC agenda, they will be much more inclined to open their wallets when they have tangible examples of something that changed as a result. This is the fundraising plight of nearly all small non-profits >> how to demonstrate 'roi' when the 'return' is some sort of social good.

    FWIW - I don't support WFC or even know anyone involved with the org (I think). However, I'm in the process of setting up my second 501(c)3 in addition to my day job. It is called The Sol Duc Foundation after my favorite OP river and it will be devoted to funding projects directed at improving our riverine environment in the PNW (not just the 'Duc). So I've been trying to research the issues as well as the orgs addressing them. If there's any reading you would recommend to help me get up to speed, it'd be greatly appreciated.
    Tim Cottage likes this.
  17. Thomas,

    I'm the antithesis of an expert on finance. I was repeating unvetted hearsay. It's based on nothing more than the observation of WFC's litigation on low-hanging legal fruit, meaning easy wins or settlements that have little biological or ecological consequence. So if an organization undertakes easy litigation that produces $$ but results in little or no measurable environmental improvement, what is the logical inference? I may have leapt to an unwarranted conclusion.

    sopflyfisher likes this.
  18. +1
  19. this is bullshit! Beardsley's found a bottomless cash cow in Harriet Bullet, unfortunately. She can't live forever (over 90 now!), and once she croaks, poor Kirk will have to find real work! He's probably good at chasing ambulances. Harriet has said more than once that she'd like to close down all the campgrounds on the icicle, and get rid of the private property owners there so she can have the place return to what it was like 85 years ago when she was a little girl. The Icicle's one of the very few streams in the area that the wild fish conservancy has failed to close, and Beardsley's a marked dirtbag in this area.
    DimeBrite likes this.

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