Dianna Bautista
About the author

Dianna Bautista is a freelance science writer with a background in biochemistry and science communication. She enjoys breaking down and writing about environmental research. She's written for Asian Scientist Magazine, California Magazine, the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, and more. When she isn't writing, she can be found swimming in any available open pool.

Articles by Dianna Bautista


Researchers are applying a novel genetic technique as part of the development of an annual estimate for the number of juvenile spring-run Chinook salmon entering the Delta.

The technique, spearheaded by geneticist Melinda Baerwald from the California Department of Water Resources, allows researchers to accurately distinguish young spring-run salmon from other runs by targeting DNA sequences specific to these fish.   In a paper published in San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science, lead authors Baerwald and Peter A. Nelson explain some of the challenges of developing this estimate, called the spring-run juvenile production estimate. A key hurdle is differentiating spring-run fish from salmon that migrate during other seasons. Unlike juvenile salmon from the winter run, spring-run juveniles are hard to identify using the conventional length-at-date approach, which determines age and spawning migration season based on size.   “There’s nothing visually about a spring-run salmon that distinguishes it...
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