The future of marine life does not look bright all over the world. The increasing temperatures of the air and water and the incessant pollution has devastating effects on sea creatures in general.
Now it seems the salmon in Klamath River is being threatened. The authorities fear the situation is somewhat similar to that recorded in 2002, when thousands of adult salmon fish were killed.
This summer’s drought was harmful to the waters of the river as well, because the upriver migration of spring chinook was slowed down. This was mainly due to the high temperatures and the lower level of the water. Moreover, it led to salmon fish gathering in cooler places, allowing infections by parasites. Chinook is expected to experience the same thing once they come back in the fall.
The parasite was recorded at levels higher than usual in salmon. According to authorities, it is an extremely dangerous parasite, because it suffocates the fish by infesting their gills.
The fact that the water is so warm doesn’t help too much either, because fish do not have the necessary strength to swim to cooler places, upstream,. This is why they would rather gather in large groups in ponds that are cooler, thanks to the water springs. However, the large number of fish in these places only help the parasite spread even more.
The Yurok Tribe and the Hoopa Valley will be the most affected ones, because they largely depend on the salmon for both food and ceremonies. This is why they asked the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to do something about it and send more water to the Klamath And Trinity rivers to help save the fish.
Nevertheless, there is not much the Bureau can do because water is scarce these days, due to the constant drought that this part of the United States has been facing this summer.
“At this point, we are just really watching the situation. It is the fourth year of severe drought. Water supplies are very limited and the situation is not good,” said Erin Curtis, the bureau’s spokeswoman.
He federal authorities were scheduled to meet in Wearville yesterday evening to discuss this problem and try to come up with solutions.
It might be very hard to come up with a solid plan his year, given the fact that the water available is also needed for irrigation projects. Last year, the bureau had to supply water for the river as well, but the fish were not as threatened as they are now.
Even if a lot of water is supplied, it is not certain whether it will save the fish or how much they really need to function properly and get rid of the deadly parasite.
Image Source: oregonlive