Thanks to Lisa K for sharing that quick video clip of a coho salmon working on a leap in Longfellow Creek, one of six she saw today “working their way upstream, shortly before the fishbone bridge.” Conditions in the creek are a challenge to fish – particularly polluted stormwater runoff – but as we first showed you back on Tuesday night, spawners are there now and thrilling spectators. Lisa also notes some didn’t make it long enough to spawn, like this female that died before releasing her eggs (the ones in the photo, she explains, emerged with “gentle pressure” on the fish’s carcass):
Lisa adds a potential health warning: “May be worth mentioning, as there are lots of off-leash dog walkers on the creek – anadromous fish, like salmon, harbor pathogens that can make a dog very, very ill, so keep dogs away from the fish carcasses.” She points to this link for more info. To find out how to minimize your contribution to the runoff pollution, check out tox-ick.org.
P.S. Expert observers say (as a commenter pointed out following our Tuesday night item) these are hatchery-raised coho – a missing adipose fin is the telltale sign.
2:36 PM: Update from Lisa – she went back to the creek and discovered a Seattle Public Utilities crew “clearing up debris jams resulting from the storm with the specific purpose of aiding spawning salmon. Apparently if you see a jam, you can notify SPU and they’ll rectify the situation.”
ADDED 7:14 PM: From Jake Jaramillo of Seattle Stairway Walks, an under-the-bridge view of the spawners:
If you’re interested in a slice of life from the creek last year – we just happened to find this video during a search, narrated by a student who went out with experts studying the coho last year.