PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Hundreds of thousands of salmon are making their way from the ocean up the Columbia River this month, a windfall for salmon eaters and tribal and recreational fishermen in the Pacific Northwest.
It’s one of the largest runs since dam construction blocked river passage for fish. The run is forecast at 1.5 million salmon by year’s end — though fish managers say the final number may turn out to be lower.
More than 460,000 adult chinook have already passed over the Bonneville Dam on their way to spawning areas in native streams. That’s the first dam salmon cross in their migration upriver.
Monday’s 67,521 chinook were the largest single-day return since the dam was built in 1938.
Fish managers attribute the large run to good ocean conditions and improved habitat.