Salmon Returns Highest Since Counting Began

Salmon returned to the Columbia River Basin this year in the highest numbers since fish counting began at Bonneville Dam more than 75 years ago.  Fish Passage Center officials say this year’s run of about 2.3 million salmon and steelhead exceeds the previous record of 2.1 million set in 2011.  This year also brought a new single-day record, when 67,521 adult fall Chinook passed by Bonneville Dam on September 8, 2014 – the highest one-day total in more than seven decades.  Biologists are particularly excited about the increasing number of natural origin fall Chinook returning to spawning grounds throughout the Columbia River Basin.    For Snake River fall Chinook specifically, returns of natural origin fish are setting modern-day records—returning in recent years in the highest numbers since Snake River dam construction began.  This year’s run should be close to last year’s record return.

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