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A test for the relative strength of maternal and stock effects in spring Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) from two different hatcheries (Study site: Warm Springs Hatchery; Stocks: Warm Springs Hatchery and Carson Hatchery; Year class: 1993)

October 1, 2012

An experiment was undertaken to determine the relative strength of maternal and stock effects in Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) reared in a common environment, as a companion study to our investigation of hatchery and wild Chinook salmon. Pure-strain and reciprocal crosses were made between two hatchery stocks (Carson and Warm Springs National Fish Hatcheries). The offspring were reared together in one of the hatcheries to the smolt stage, and then were transferred to a seawater rearing facility (USGS-Marrowstone Field Station). Differences in survival, growth and disease prevalence were assessed. Fish with Carson parentage grew to greater size at the hatchery and in seawater than the pure-strain Warm Springs fish, but showed higher mortality at introduction to seawater. The analyses of maternal and stock effects were inconclusive, but the theoretical responses to different combinations of maternal and stock effects may be useful in interpreting stock comparison studies.