First Sockeye Reach Idaho's Stanley Basin

Jul 30, 2012

The first sockeye arrived in Idaho’s Salmon River this week -- That’s later than usual. EarthFix Reporter Aaron Kunz explains.

Most of Idaho’s sockeye come from the Salmon River. It’s also where they return to spawn. Tom Stuart is a salmon advocate. He says the endangered salmon species is more than two weeks behind schedule. That has him worried.

Stuart: “It tells salmon advocates that the red fish of Redfish Lake are still at risk.”

Idaho Fish and Game biologists expect this year’s sockeye run to be only a third of last year’s one-thousand that returned to a section of the Salmon River called the Stanley Basin.

Sockeye numbers are also down at the Snake River’s Lower Granite Dam in Southeastern Washington. That’s the final dam the fish must pass before they reach Idaho.

Copyright 2012 Northwest Public Radio