Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Alaska
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Alaska Project

Genetic Diversity and Population Rlations of Resident Kokanee and Andadromous Salmon in Copper Lake (Wrangell-St. Elias National Park)

January 2014 - May 2016


Participating Agencies

  • Natural Resources Preservation Program

Copper Lake in the Wrangell-St. Elias National Park (WSTP) is thought to be home to a population of kokanee salmon, a non-migratory (i.e., resident) form of sockeye salmon. Field surveys have produced small sockeye salmon specimens in reproductive condition. Whether these fish belong to a self-perpetuating population of resident salmon or to a sockeye population that expresses both migratory and non-migratory life history variants remains to be determined.This project aims to produce a thorough baseline assessment of sockeye salmon genetic variability in Copper and Tanada Lakes (WSTP) using suites of genetic markers widely deployed for sockeye salmon assessments in the state. The resulting measures of genetic diversity (from multi-locus genotypes) will be summarized in indices of variation within and between groups (e.g. lakes, resident vs. migratory, drainage), which serve as estimates of the degree of genetic differentiation between groups.