May 10, 2022
Coordinator: Bob Hetzler
Member Bob Hetzler arranged for and lead a group of SCTC members to HUBBS Sea World Research Institute in Carlsbad to visit the White Seabass Hatchery. Our group included Terry Tysseland, Ken Huss, Steve Gammer, Paul McEachern, Jim Bateman, Tani Poe, Dick Ableser, & Bob Hetzler.
Upon arrival at the research institute the group was greeted and provided with a very special guided tour of the hatchery by the President and CEO, Donald Kent. The tour included all phases of raising the White Seabass from eggs to their release size of 6 inches. The group visited the research labs and grow out pens while learning about the history of the hatchery and the new genetic marking system to identify and measure their success. It has been documented that 30% of all wild caught WSB can be traced back the hatchery…previously it was thought that only less than 1% survived.
Below was taken from an article by AFTCO:
“A recent earth-shattering genetics study shows that the California white seabass hatchery program has been far more successful than previously understood. It is now time for the state and its California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to course-correct and make this program a priority.
The recent success reported in efforts to restock white seabass off Southern California is the evidence needed for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to reprioritize the Ocean Resources Enhancement and Hatchery Program (OREHP). A new study has found that the white seabass hatchery has made a far greater positive impact on wild fish population levels than previously reported. The fishing public strongly supports the CDFW hatchery program and contributes an estimated $1.7 million to OREHP annually. However, the state’s history of placing the hatchery low on its priority list has meant that funding to the Carlsbad-based white seabass hatchery has become woefully insufficient. Over the past ten years, the hatchery’s budget has shrunk by an estimated 50 percent in inflation-adjusted terms, all while the demands on the hatchery have increased.”
On a further note, Bob Hetzler started the Huntington Beach WSB grow pen in 1996 which you can see if you look to the water at the corner of Warner and PCH.
Thank you, Bob, for an informative tour and a delicious lunch in the beach afterwards.
California anglers already strongly support the CDFW hatchery program, contributing an estimated
to OREHP annually.
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