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Page added on January 30, 2008

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Population plummets from high five years ago; far fewer juveniles, too

SAN FRANCISCO – The number of chinook salmon returning to California’s Central Valley has reached a near-record low, pointing to an “unprecedented collapse” that could lead to severe restrictions on West Coast salmon fishing this year, according to federal fishery regulators.

The sharp drop in chinook, or king, salmon returning from the Pacific Ocean to spawn in the Sacramento River and its tributaries this past fall is part of broader decline in wild salmon runs in rivers across the West.

The population dropped more than 88 percent from its all-time high five years ago, according to an internal memo sent to members of the Pacific Fishery Management Council and obtained by The Associated Press.

MSNBC



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