Tribes ask for more support for salmon reintroduction to the Upper Columbia

Northwest News Network

Native American tribes, who want help to continue reintroducing salmon above Grand Coulee Dam, asked for support to continue fish survival studies at Northwest Power and Conservation Council meetings this week. The tribes said they need support for donor stocks, rearing equipment and equipment for the acoustic and PIT tagging studies.

The phased reintroduction has been a long time coming.

When Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph dams were built nearly 100 years ago, they blocked salmon from swimming to the upper reaches of the Columbia River.

At the time, tribal elders called it the beginning of the end, a death by drowning, as Lake Roosevelt flooded some of the best fishing spots for the Upper Columbia tribes.

Now, efforts to bring salmon around the dams and into the blocked area are gaining momentum, a hopeful renewal of rights, tribal officials said.

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