Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery

Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery


Mossyrock, Washington

The Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery is the largest and most sophisticated publicly owned fish hatchery in the U.S, providing 800,000 pounds of fish annually. Over $30 million in improvements to Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery were done to remodel and expand the operations. Deere & Ault Consultants, Inc. staff design included the water treatment systems, Early Rearing Building and raceway remodels.


Aerial view of the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery.

Insufficient groundwater supply for pathogen-free rearing necessitated a substantial overhaul of the water supply systems. Six water treatment systems were designed to augment the pathogen-free groundwater source by recirculating up to 95% of each system’s water supply. The six systems provide temperature-controlled water supply to the incubation stacks and early rearing troughs for coho, spring and fall Chinook, and steelhead. Each recirculation system includes a three-pump pumping station, pressure or drum filtration, UV sterilization, a heat exchanger to ensure the desired temperature at all times, and packed columns designed to maintain optimal levels of dissolved oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the recirculation streams.

Much of the 50,000 square foot hatchery building was remodeled, including new offices, laboratory space, incubation and early rearing rooms, and support equipment rooms. New HVAC systems were designed to provide efficient environmental control. All of the incubation and early rearing spaces were reorganized and rebuilt to provide a more efficient hatchery operation for an expanded production program. Thirty-six concrete raceways, each measuring 10 feet by 200 feet, were rehabilitated and modified to a new shape. New influent and effluent piping, valves, and gates were designed to facilitate a new water supply and a volitional release channel and pipeline.

Since completion of the project, Deere & Ault has been retained by Tacoma Power to design new automated feeding systems, rehabilitate the existing well field and provide operations consulting. Deere & Ault is proud to be a part of the revolutionary design that produces the greatest numbers of salmon and steelhead in a single facility, in an efficient, reliable and sustainable way.

Client: Tacoma Power

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