The latest salmon returns are in for 2023 and two streamkeepers from the region have made observations about the different populations. A great year for Pink Salmon was the good news. Poor returns for Chum were noted by both streamkeepers.Continue reading How the Salmon Run: Streamkeepers weigh in on latest salmon returns
Part 2 of a series, click here for part 1.
Cortes Currents was mistaken in the original version of this story. The Chum run did not come into Basil Creek early this year – these are Pinks.
According to Cortes Island Streamkeeper Christine Robinson there have not been any Pink runs on Cortes since 2015 (when most of them perished in front of the culvert in Squirrel Cove), but there was a huge surplus this year. Pinks are known to stray and find creeks other than their natal streams, and this may be an explanation for their presence on Cortes Island. They started to turn up in Squirrel Cove Creek two to three weeks ago, and Basil Creek and Chris’ Lagoon around Sept 28, but there does not appear to be enough water in the creeks for them.Continue reading Pink Salmon return to Cortes after 8 years, but water levels are too low
Part 1 in a series of articles about the Fall 2023 Salmon runs; Click here for Part 2.
Very little water is trickling through Basil Creek, where Cortes Island’s principal Chum run occurs in late October. There have been few days of rain on Cortes since May, and some of the area’s shallow wells stopped producing in July. Only about 10 Chum were seen in Basil Creek during the 2022 drought. Unless water levels rise, this may be the second year in a row when there is not a significant creek for the Chum return.
According to the Pacific Salmon Foundation, BC is going through ‘one of the most extreme periods of drought in recorded history.’Continue reading Will the heavy rains come in time for this year’s Chum run in Basil Creek?
Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
The collapse of wild salmon is causing a current of pain that spans the length of the Yukon River, from its mouth at Alaska’s Bering Sea to the headwaters in Canada’s Yukon territory 3,000 kilometres away.
Indigenous people on both sides of the border spoke about the devastation the loss of chinook salmon and the more recent collapse of chum stocks are having on communities while testifying at the Yukon River Panel, a bilateral commission that manages salmon stocks, during its meeting in Whitehorse this week.Continue reading Yukon River’s salmon runs likely to stay small while Indigenous Peoples’ sacrifice grows
So far, monitoring of creeks and streams on Cortes Island indicates a very poor return of chum salmon to their spawning grounds this year, according to Christine and Cec Robinson. They’re longtime members of the local stream keepers project, overseen by the conservation and stewardship organization Friends of Cortes Island (FOCI). Monitoring of the chum return occurs from mid-September to early December each year.Continue reading Low seasonal return of chum salmon to spawning grounds ‘a mystery,’ say local monitors