Sawmill Creek Hatchery is NSRAA’s newest facility with construction completed in 2008. This facility was designed to produce 2,000,000 coho smolt annually. Currently NSRAA is in the broodstock development stage using Salmon Lake coho at the head of Silver Bay five miles to the southeast. Remote eggtakes are conducted in late-October and were initiated in 2009. Approximately 250,000 eggs will be taken annually until 2012 when the first adults will return from broodyear 2009 eggs. Medvejie Hatchery will be used for incubation during broodstock development and will continue to be the site for broodstock rearing, release, and adult return.
Beginning in 2012, sufficient adults should return to provide some 600,000 eggs and initiation of phase II of the program. Production eggs will be incubated at Sawmill Creek Hatchery, reared in raceways and/or ponds to full term smolt, and then transported to Deep Inlet for thirty days of imprinting and rearing prior to release.
Adult production at Deep Inlet will be caught in traditional northern outside troll fisheries and a developing Sitka Sound and Eastern Channel troll fishery. Troll harvest rate is expected to be 50%. Fish escaping these troll fisheries will enter Deep Inlet Terminal Harvest Area (THA) and get caught in chum salmon directed Deep Inlet rotational gillnet, seine, and troll fisheries. A sport fishery targeting adult returns is expected to develop in Eastern Channel and along Long Island.
Phase III is expected to begin in 2015 when the second generation brood cycle returns. Some 2.5 million eggs will be taken at Medvejie Hatchery and transported to Sawmill Creek Hatchery for incubation and rearing. The resultant smolt will be taken to Deep Inlet as described above in 2017.