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A fish story that is hard to believe…
Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, most of the fishing I did was for salmon and steel head in the local rivers. Salmon lay their eggs in the head waters of coastal rivers and when the baby salmon (called fry) are about a foot long, they make it down river to the ocean and disappear into the sea (even today we do not know where exactly). Four years later the salmon come back and swim upstream to the exact river they were born to lay their eggs and start the cycle again. One of the true amazing miracles in nature. Keep reading and listen to this amazing story.
The Truckee River is a small costal river in Northern California that for some years had diminishing steel head and salmon return runs coming to spawn and lay their eggs. The thought was to bring some eggs from somewhere else and raise the eggs in the Truckee river hatchery and let them go into the river with the plan that they would come back to the Truckee River to spawn four years later and thus increase the numbers of fish returning to the Truckee River.
So the Truckee hatchery folks made arrangements to get some fertilized eggs from the hatchery people on the Snake River in Idaho. Hundreds of miles away. They flew the eggs in and they raised the Idaho fish eggs in fish boxes in the California hatchery and when the small fry were large enough, they opened the fish gates in the hatchery to let the fry go into the head waters of the Truckee. Guess what happened?
Four years later, no extra fish were noticed returning to the Truckee River. However, they had a bumper crop of returning steelhead return to the Snake River in Idaho. How does a small 6 inch fish go hundreds of miles under water from one river to the ocean, then 4 years later go up another river where its parents came from finding their way back? Mother Nature is an amazing thing!
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