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Federal suit filed over Elwha hatchery fish

January 29th, 2014 - 5:27am

(Tacoma) A number of conservation groups is suing to stop release of hatchery fish into the Elwha River.

The Lower Elwha Tribe, Olympic National Park, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service are named in the suit filed in federal court in Tacoma.

The conservation groups argue releasing coho and steelhead from hatcheries will weaken the genetic stocks of the wild fish runs in the river.

They also are asking the government to stop capturing wild stocks to be used in the hatcheries.

Releasing the fish to bolster runs in the river is part of the plan outlined in the Elwha River Restoration project.

A similar suit filed last year, was tossed out of the federal district court.

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