National Parks: Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe hails salmon return

The Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe of Washington is seeing strong runs of salmon now that dams have been removed from the Elwha River:
Salmon fisheries seem to be quickly rebuilding along the Elwha River drainage below Olympic National Park in the wake of efforts to restore the river, as thousands of Chinook salmon have been counted in the river and its tributaries.

On September 17, a team of biologists representing the national park, Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, U.S. Geological Survey, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and NOAA Fisheries navigated more than 13 miles of the Elwha River and tributaries with the goal of counting all the living and dead adult Chinook and map the spawning salmon’s redds.

Biologists walked and snorkeled the river from just below what remains of Glines Canyon Dam to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, as well as the lower portions of three of the river’s tributaries - Indian Creek, Hughes Creek, and Little River.

Results from the survey indicate this year’s Chinook return is one of the strongest since 1992 and reveal that the salmon are readily moving into stretches of the river formerly blocked by the Elwha Dam, park officials said in a release (before the government shutdown).

Get the Story:
Salmon Swarm To Spawn In Elwha River And Its Tributaries At Olympic National Park (National Parks Traveler 10/3)

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