Students from Edmonds-Woodway and Meadowdale high schools are helping restore and enhance local salmon populations. Last Friday and Saturday, students placed fertilized coho and chum salmon eggs in instream incubators called “hatchboxes.” The hatchboxes with chum salmon eggs were placed in lower Lunds Gulch Creek at Meadowdale Beach Park and those with coho salmon eggs were placed in Edmonds’ upper Shell Creek.
The salmon eggs will hatch in the hatchbox and the baby salmon will grow there until they have consumed their yolk sac and are ready to swim out of the hatchbox and begin life in the stream as salmon fry. This is similar to the natural process that occurs with salmon eggs laid in the gravel and growing to the fry stage before emerging from the gravel. Chum salmon fry will remain in the stream for only a few days before swimming out to saltwater, whereas coho salmon will spend the first year of their life in the stream.
The EWHS Students Saving Salmon club placed the coho salmon eggs in the upper portion of Shell Creek in Yost Park so that the young salmon can grow in stream habitat that is otherwise inaccessible due to an impassable waterfall near 7th Avenue and Glen Street.
— Story and photos courtesy Joe Scordino