Philip Starr Administration Building
39015-A 172nd Ave SE
Auburn, WA 98092
Mon 8:00am - 5:00pm
Tue 8:00am - 5:00pm
Wed 8:00am - 5:00pm
Thu 8:00am - 5:00pm
Fri 8:00am - 5:00pm
The Muckleshoot Indian Tribe’s two fish production hatcheries, White River and Keta Creek Complex, strive to fertilize over 10 million eggs annually. We achieved this goal with a final green egg estimate of 11.2 million fertilized eggs this year despite a struggle with water supplies during times of drought in 2022. Fish production accomplished work this year with the crucial help and collaboration of Fisheries Harvest Management and Fisheries Habitat staff to support the effort.
White River Spring Chinook Hatchery serves to collect adult Spring Chinook and fertilize eggs to provide fingerlings for on-station release and fry for acclimation ponds to be release in the upper watershed above Mud Mountain Dam. Since 2018, we have incrementally increased the White River Hatchery production by 200,000 fingerlings. To meet this goal, approximately 1,100 adult brood stock fish (500 females and 600 males) are collected for spawning for a realized take of about 1,540,000 eggs of which 660,000 fry are reared on-station to 80 fish per pound during the month of May. The other 880,000 eggs are transferred to WDFW Puyallup Trout Hatchery for hatching and rearing and ultimately those fish are placed into acclimation ponds on tributary rivers above Mud Mountain Dam for release in late May.
Keta Creek Hatchery staff spawns and rears Green River Chum and Coho Salmon returning to the hatchery during the month of November and has also been increasing the yearling Coho program in order to acclimate them to a newly expanded Elliott Bay Net Pen now consisting of a second net pen. This 2022 year brought our second release increase to provide 1 million from 500,000 Coho utilizing the second pen. Every year, staff collects and fertilizes 6,000,000 chum and 2,000,000 Coho eggs for incubation and onsite rearing. About 5 million Chum salmon are released from Keta Creek Hatchery as fed fry. The Coho are raised for a full year and one half and are released as yearlings. An additional 1 million Coho are released from Keta Hatchery into Crisp Creek. Keta Hatchery Staff also help to care for 2 million Fall Chinook at Palmer Hatchery.
Again we will be receiving grant funds to offset maintenance and repair costs for the hatchery, and we will be looking into ways to improve water supply. Droughts are becoming the normal weather pattern for western Washington and we must do all that we can to protect fish production. We have fixed all of the wells and bolstering groundwater supply will enable us to rear more fingerlings on-station for release, increasing our overall production. Engineering design plans to add six new, 20-foot diameter, circular tanks for holding and rearing additional Spring Chinook adults and juveniles are still underway.
The Keta Complex with its recent upgrade is performing well from an operational standpoint, but water is essential for its fish production to continue into the future. This year marked a massive chum run year providing outstanding fishing opportunities that we will see again next year. We will continue to address water supply concerns during the coming year working as a team to investigate ways to augment. Keta Hatchery looks forward to hosting another fun-filled Trout Derby in 2023.