Thumbs up for the partnership working to restore coho salmon in Porter Creek — E&J Gallo, Sweetwater Spring Ranch and the Sonoma Resource Conservation District. As Staff Writer Guy Kovner reported this week (“Coho salmon return to Russian River tributary,” Tuesday), about 6,000 hatchery-born salmon were released into Porter Creek, a tributary of the Russian River where pools have been created with woody debris to give the young fish shelter before they begin migrating to the Pacific Ocean.
Many of the fish are tagged to track their origin and movement, with the hope that they will return in two to three years to spawn. Coho salmon once were abundant in the Russian River, supporting an annual commercial harvest of more than 13,000 fish. But the numbers have dwindled, with just 192 adult fish counted last winter. Coho salmon are listed as endangered, and the goal is to build the Russian River’s winter coho run up to 10,100.
There’s a long way to go, but efforts like the Porter Creek partnership increase the chances of success.