Matanuska-Susitna Borough

Coho Genetics for the Yentna River


The legislature funded a 2-year study to compile and test a coho salmon genetic baseline for MSA in Cook Inlet. This funding resulted in a baseline that contains 84 populations from throughout Cook Inlet. However, the high levels of variation detected among populations of coho salmon require increased representation of existing populations within drainages to identify finer-scale reporting groups. The current baseline has three gaps that need to be filled before it can be used for MSA within the Susitna River Drainage or to provide more fine-scale reporting groups within Upper Cook Inlet. We propose to collect samples from spawning aggregates of coho salmon in Yentna and Knik river tributaries missing from the current baseline. Samples will also be collected from coho salmon passing the weirs on Deshka River and Jim Creek.

Timeline: December 2015-December 2018

Project Status

Completed 2016 field sampling and collected 678 samples.  Completed laboratory analysis of samples and 573 selected for genotyping.  Genotyped 450 radio-tagged coho salmon from archived collections.  Completed 2017 sampling and collected 1,184 coho salmon samples.  Provided laboratory staff with list of 2017 baseline tissue samples for genotyping (1,205 fish).  Extracted DNA and genotyped fish sampled in 2017.  Statistically analyzed baseline and determined reporting groups suitable for mixed-stock analysis.  In fall 2018, will collect additional baseline samples from locations that did not meet sampling goals.


Ted Eischeid

Planner II

Matanuska-Susitna Borough

350 E Dahlia Ave

Palmer, AK 99645

P (907) 861-8606 |

Project Cost