A Salmon Journey

From the Shuswap, to the Ocean, and back again.

Follow the journey and life of a Sockeye Salmon.

In the fall, my mother lays me and I begin my life as an egg in the fast-flowing Adams River.

My egg is laid with 2,200 to 4,300 sibling eggs in the Adams River.

Through the fall and into winter, I grow inside my little egg home until I'm big and developed enough to break out and swim free. I'm now called an "alevin".

I hatch in the Adams River with about 900 siblings.

When spring begins in March, my siblings and I come out of our gravel homes and venture into the world. We're now called "fry".

We swim straight to the Shuswap Lakes at night.

I grow bigger and stronger.

I hang out in the Shuswap Lake for 1 year.

Before long, I'm too big for the Shuswap Lake and need to continue on.

By the time I leave the Shuswap, I only have 250 siblings.

My journey to the ocean is the most dangerous I've ever experienced in my young life.

It takes me 1 week to swim to the ocean.

I spend my time swimming around where my predators are killer whales & human fisherman.

I spend 2 to 3 years in the ocean, growing and avoiding predators.

In the open ocean, I have plenty of food to help me grow.

I grow a lot while I'm in the ocean.

In early September I begin my return home.

I stop eating. I now only have 9 siblings.

The journey home is very dangerous and I swim hard.

I encounter many hazards on my journey home.

I travel through the fish ladders at Hell’s Gate on the Fraser River.

We travel very far.

Our journey takes us from the Pacific Ocean, through the Fraser and Thompson Rivers, and finally into the Adams River.

Finally, after weeks of hard work, we've finally made it back home to have our babies.

I reach the Adams River with only 1 sibling from 4 years ago.

Just like my parents died for me, I leave my body for my babies, eagles, gulls, bears, and other animals. It's the cycle of life.

I die and leave my body for food.

Special Thanks

We would like to offer a special thanks to Brenda Guiled for the use of her wonderful illustrations and adapation of her book, Sockeye Salmon Odyssey: The story of sockeye salmon of British Columbia through their lifecycle and travels.