Letters of Support: ***** Alvordensis Translocation Project

Embedded below is an example of a letter of recommendation or encouragement for a project to be undertaken to separate, secure, protect and propagate a population of phenotypical Alvord cutthroat trout for future utilization in the restoration of trout with (at least) the physical characteristics of the Alvord cutthroat trout.
Patrick C. Trotter, Ph.D.
4926 26th Ave. S., Seattle, WA 98108

May 20, 2010

Shannon M. Hurn

District Fish Biologist

Malheur Watershed District

237 Highway 20 South, P.O. Box 8

Hines, OR 97738

Dear Ms Hurn:

I am author of the book, Cutthroat: Native Trout of the West (2nd edition, University of California Press, 2008).  I am writing to express my support for your proposal to collect and translocate trout resembling the Alvord cutthroat trout from ***** Creek on the **** ******** National Antelope Refuge to one or more suitable streams within the Alvord Basin.  I am happy to provide this endorsement for several reasons, one of the foremost being that this project will return trout with a strong resemblance to the native Alvord form to a basin from which it has been absent for many years.

The Alvord cutthroat subspecies is believed extinct in its original Alvord Basin habitat.  However, local testimony indicates that Alvord Basin trout were introduced into at least one stream outside the basin, ***** Creek being the most likely possibility, long before extinction occurred.  I am thoroughly familiar with the original appearance and meristic character descriptions of the Alvord cutthroat trout by Carl Hubbs and R.J. Behnke, and can assert from personal on-site observations that trout matching the original Alvord appearance phenotype indeed are present in ***** Creek.  But ***** Creek also has been stocked with other subspecies of cutthroat trout and with rainbow trout over the years, and so no longer serves as a good refugium for the relict Alvord cutthroat phenotype.

Your project would not only establish a more secure refugium, but also would reestablish trout having at least the appearance phenotype of the Alvord subspecies within its native range. In addition, the project would provide a source of specimens and tissue samples for future studies into the origin and genetic stability of the phenotype, as well as trout for fishery management purposes—as replacements for phasing out nonnative populations within the Alvord basin, for example, should this become a management objective.

For all of these reasons, this project should rank as high priority for grant funding.  I heartily support your proposal and your effort to secure grant funding for this important work.

Very truly yours,

Patrick Trotter

Patrick Trotter - Cutthroat Native Trout of the West


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Kortum of Discovery (a slight play on Lewis & Clark's Corps of Discovery) is a family team that is Affirming the Exceptional Beauty of Nature, one Adventure at a Time. With a focus toward rare and endangered species in the Great Basin and American west: discoveries, unique methodologies, and many “tall tales to tell” are continually being shared around the campfire!
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5 Responses to Letters of Support: ***** Alvordensis Translocation Project

  1. Pingback: Intrinsic Value of Rescue|Restoration of the Alvord Phenotype | Alvord Cutthroat Trout — Phenotype       Remnant Rescue‎ | ‎Restoration Précis

  2. Pingback: How Time Flies . . . Five Year Anniversary Approaches | Alvord Cutthroat Trout — Phenotype       Remnant Rescue‎ | ‎Restoration Précis

  3. Pingback: May We Help the Alvord Cutthroat Trout Live — In Perpetuity | Alvord Cutthroat Trout — Phenotype       Remnant Rescue‎ | ‎Restoration Précis

  4. Pingback: A few Exigent Questions—in Pursuit of Apt Answers | Alvord Cutthroat Trout — Phenotype       Remnant Rescue‎ | ‎Restoration Précis

  5. Larry Host says:

    While working as a biologist in Nevada, I reviewed some data that indicated the last Alvord-type fish were sampled by an NDOW and a BLM fisheries biologist in the 1980s and found to be F1 rainbow hybrids. Because native trouts are better adapted to local habitats in the arid west than rainbows, I recommended an Alvord breeding project to restore what we could of the genotype and phenotype. There was no support from those agencies to do it, given their many other higher priorities. If you can get sponsorship from Trout Unlimited and some habitat to put them in without other trout species, I agree that the scientific and fishery benefits would be worth the candle. I recommend the private approach because the government agencies have managed to offend many ranchers and fisherpeople locally. I also recommend that careful attention be given to the concerns and questions of the locals. Some of them are pretty savvy about the pitfalls and difficulties of habitat management in the Basin and Range country. I wish you well in your efforts.

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