"Time to Dance the Salmon Home"

"This summer a Tribal ceremony celebrated the return of sacred fish, lost for generations."

"Late in the morning on July 12, a helicopter landed in a field near the entrance to AhDiNa, a campground on the McCloud River in Northern California. Children ran ahead to greet the craft, and soon the road was lined with spectators waiting to witness the delivery of precious cargo: an insulated bucket containing 25,000 fertilized winter-run Chinook salmon eggs.

These eggs would not only bring the Winnemem Wintu Tribe one step closer to bringing salmon, or Nur, back to their ancestral waters, but could also help save the species from extinction.

Winter-run Chinook spawn in summer, but the spring-fed McCloud River runs cold all year round, buffering eggs and young salmon from even the worst summer drought. For 80 years the formidable Shasta Dam has blocked Chinook from the McCloud. Now fish are stuck in California’s Central Valley, where sizzling temperatures and water withdrawals make the Sacramento River lethal."

Juliet Grable reports for The Revelator August 14, 2023.

Source: The Revelator, 08/18/2023