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Cautious Optimism As Chinook Salmon Return

Health Sustainability +2 more

US - Preliminary counts of fall-run Chinook salmon returning to spawn in Central Valley rivers, California are encouraging, with this year's numbers well ahead of the record lows measured in the past two years.

However, recovery of the species—and the valuable commercial and recreational fisheries it supports—will require stronger efforts to reverse damage caused by excessive water diversions, habitat loss and pollution to the river and San Francisco Bay habitats the fish need for spawning and rearing, said The Bay Institute's Executive Director and Chief Scientist, Dr Christina Swanson.

The Bay Institute has announced two opportunities for the public to learn more about this remarkable fish and the vital role it plays in California's largest watershed, coastal fishing communities and the state's economy.

November and December are the best months to view wild salmon returning to spawn in California's rivers and streams. The Bay Institute recently launched an updated online salmon viewing map, an interactive guidebook to the best locations to see salmon in the wild. The map, along with links to other organisations leading salmon viewing walking tours and events, is available at:

On December 4th, Dr Swanson will join commercial and recreational salmon fishermen, charter boat operators, fish buyers and restaurateurs at a "salmon summit" hosted by Congresswoman Jackie Speier. The event, to be held at Mavericks Lodge and Event Center in Princeton from 11AM to 2 PM, will include comments by Congresswoman Speier, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey and Congressman Mike Thompson, panel discussions on the decline of California's salmon populations and what is needed to restore the species and preserve the fishery, and questions from the audience. More information about the event is available at: