Where Have all the Salmon Gone?

Last night was Appreciation Night at the Whitehorse Rapids Fishway. There were kids’ games, door prizes and refreshments, but sadly, few chinook salmon. One female arrived in the morning and two males showed up in the evening…a far cry from the dozens that typically navigate their way through the ladder in the run of a day. In all, only 70 salmon have reached the fishladder this summer.

A rare sight

With the real thing in short supply, visitors had to look elsewhere to get their salmon fix:

A silk painting commissioned by a local artist.

Cake anyone?

A tank of salmon fry. They’ll be released in a few weeks and will find their way to the Bering Sea next year. Hopefully we’ll see some of them return to the ladder in five or six years. Photo credit for this shot: Yukon News.

Salmon scales: did you know that you can tell the age of a fish by counting the rings on its scales, much like you count tree rings? There’s lots to be learned by visiting the fishladder.


3 thoughts on “Where Have all the Salmon Gone?

  1. I’ve always wanted to go and see the fish when there were actually fish going up the ladder, but I guess I might be missing out again this year if that’s all the action the fishway is getting. Scary.

    But oh my goodness, who the heck made that cake? It’s amazing!


  2. So that’s what the displays look like now they’re up. Very nice! The salmon on silk turned out well, didn’t it? But when the salmon don’t show up, it’s like holding a surprise party and the guest of honour doesn’t come! Do salmon run late, like the veg this year?


  3. Yeah! Sixteen salmon came through today. So yes Lucca, they are late this year. Even sixteen isn’t a great number but it’s the most we’ve seen in one day all season so it’s a reason to celebrate. Fawn, there are more salmon holding at the bottom of the fishladder, so if you have the time to go in the next day or two, you will likely see some of them in the viewing windows. I suspect Jade would enjoy herself.

    As for who made the cake, it was the wife of a member of the Yukon Fish and Game Association. She does it every year. Talk about patience!!


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