Kootenai River white sturgeon and native burbot were once abundant in the Kootenai River. Today there are only about 1000 wild Kootenai River sturgeon left and native Kootenai River burbot are almost extinct. These species provided a culturally important Tribal fishery to the Kootenai people as well as a valued local recreational fishery.
In 1990 the Kootenai Tribe started a program to bring sturgeon back into the Kootenai River. The Tribe recently built a new fish hatchery at Twin Rivers which will expand the sturgeon program and produce burbot for reintroduction into the Kootenai River.
The Twin Rivers Hatchery shares the Twin Rivers Resort site, and includes a visitor interpretive center so that guests can learn more about the Tribe’s project.
More information on the Tribe’s hatchery is available at Restoring the Kootenai.