Drought making harder for winter-run Chinook salmon to recover

Drought making harder for winter-run Chinook salmon to recover

It seems that drought is making things tougher for the winter-run Chinook salmon to recover. It has been said so as the number of young salmons moving downstream from their Sacramento River spawning grounds is lower even from last year.

Mention of last year is done because that time, a complete generation of winter-run Chinook was wiped out due to warm water temperatures. Maria Rea, a regional official of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said that though it is not good news, number can improve if November storms take out juveniles present below Shasta Dam.

As per count made till now, 22% fewer juvenile Winter Run Chinook salmon have been spotted in the river in comparison to last year. This seems to be a problematic situation.

Garwin Yip, Water Operations and Delta Consultations Branch Chief for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Sacramento, explained that these salmons move to the Pacific Ocean through the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta and their last destination is the Golden Gate Bridge.

Yip said that they are having hopes for things to improve during November and December, as more number of young fish can start migrating downstream of Shasta Dam in Northern California.

Yip said that water temperature plays an important part in marine animals’ lives. To cite an example, the juvenile Chinook get hint to start their journey of swimming downstream from the coldness of the water. If water is warm then it can make them lazy and more vulnerable to predators and infections.

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