SEATAC, Wash. – SeaTac Public Works released salmon, raised by the city, into the wild at Des Moines Creek on Saturday.
This is the third year in a row that the city has raised salmon and released them into the wild. According to a press release from SeaTac Public Works, salmon populations have declined in recent years. Local hatcheries have tried to help keep fish populations stable by raising their own salmon eggs and releasing them into the creeks of Puget Sound.
At 11:00 a.m. Saturday, SeaTac elected officials and public works staff held an event on the Des Moines Creek Trail for the public to help count salmon and release them back into the creek.
On January 14, the Town of SeaTac collected coho salmon eggs from the Soos Creek Hatchery and brought them to their tank at the SeaTac Community Center.
In January 2021, Washington Governor Jay Inslee proposed investing $187 million in salmon recovery as part of his 2022 budget and policy proposals.
Inslee’s proposed investments in salmon recovery include $123 million in new protections for salmon riparian habitat along the banks of rivers and streams and more than $16 million for quality and of the water temperature.
He also wants to invest $5 million in green infrastructure grants for projects that store water during high flows and release it during low flows, as well as $6.5 million to improve science and monitoring. .
Some of the specifics of Inslee’s plan include removing more fish passage barriers, such as culverts, and reintroducing salmon to their historic habitat above areas blocked by barriers such as dams and bridges. .
The plan also includes objectives to integrate salmon recovery with hatchery and hydropower operations.
Salmon populations are in trouble. According to the 2020 State of Salmon in the Watersheds report, more than 70% of endangered or threatened salmon and rainbow trout populations are “not keeping pace” with recovery targets or are ” in crisis “. Salmon are losing more habitat than they are gaining, Inslee said.