Posts Tagged ‘spawning


Texture of a Downpour

and a missed opportunity via “I should go over there….no, I’ll do it tomorrow”. The water was up and the salmon were moving up river. In fact, look across the river, in the below image, and you will note a small stream flowing into the river. My attention was drawn toward the mouth of that small stream. Dozens of large salmon were staged at the mouth and attempting to push up into the stream. Their backs were protruding as they pushed, thrashed and twisted via powerful tail thrusts. 


I thought that would make for some great photos. I would sit and focus on the five foot wide mouth and take great shots of the fish, rocks, water and splashes. Yes, that was a great idea I thought. But, not that day, I had to catch fish (those fish staged off the small stream are quite vulnerable and to me it would be blatantly unethical to harass them at the point they were entering their spawning habitat).

What I didn’t think about was the water level not only dropping for the main river, but also for the small stream. The next day, the water had dropped so far the salmon could not make a run into the small stream. They were no where to be seen. Opportunity lost…so I fished upriver.

Tonight, I’m back home and I can see it is currently raining hard at the coast. The water will rise by morning and those salmon will be staged off that small stream and muscle up over those rocks and I won’t be there to capture it. Maybe soon (it won’t last much longer) or maybe it waits until next year.


Salmon Leaping: How Do They Do That?

Salmon-Waterfall1So in light of my last post about fish above waterfalls or natural barriers: so how do they jump up those waterfalls?

“Good leaps depend on the pool below the falls. The deeper the pool, the better the take-off angle, and the faster the fish can go. Consequently, “the higher the fish can leap,” says education coordinator Jonathan Lyman of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Also, water falling from a ledge above hits the water surface below, and continues to plunge deep below the surface. Then — under pressure from more plummeting water — the water rushes back up to the surface. The continuing falling water acts as a hydraulic jack, squeezing the water back up to the surface. Fish use the “hydraulic jump” water to boost their initial leap, says Webb.

Among Pacific salmon, Lyman says, Coho and steelhead (rainbow) trout are the best leapers because they seek the high river source to spawn. The chum salmon is the poorest leaper. The Atlantic salmon is the best leaper of all salmon.” (source)

Water depth of the pool below the falls and the hydraulic push of the plunging water back upward combine to propel the determined fish.


Chinook’s Passing By…Cyril Kamir

This is beautiful to watch. Epic, grace, power, bittersweet…the renewal of passage, procreation and death. Only to be followed, hopefully, by yet another similar procession. Watch this short but sweet procession of Chinook Salmon in the Wenatchee River.

Yesterday, I heard a fly shop guide remark about the State of Washington launching a chopper to check on delayed Salmon off the mouth of the Columbia River. Allegedly they spotted a massive 20 some miles long pod of salmon staged some distance from the mouth of the Columbia River. The rains have just started and those fish will be arriving….late, but hopefully with optimum conditions. (back up)


Ape Reports: Group Spurts Alert (Steelhead Spawning)

“Essentially it’s a major free for all with a “may the best and closest ’spurt’ win” mentality….  Yup, this means that the male rainbow trout is able to fertilize the eggs of a female steelhead. So much for all those steelhead snobs who turn their noses up at the “measly trout”.” Ms. Vokey points the way toward more info starting on Pg. 42.

Below @ “The Past” you can search back to 2008 month by month

August 2020

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