Drought Forces California to Truck Salmon to the Sea
The California drought remains paramount and unprecedented, as this month the arid State announced its biggest ever fish-lift.
State and federal wildlife agencies have been working in conjunction to transport a new generation of salmon via tanker truck to San Francisco Bay. Due to the drought, rivers and streams have become too shallow or too warm for salmon to navigate and survive the journey to the Pacific Ocean.
More than 50 miles of the San Joaquin River is dried up, a body of water that has been the tried and true course used by salmon to spawn.
“It’s huge,” Stafford Lehr, chief of fisheries, told the Associated Press. “This is a massive effort statewide on multiple systems. We’re going to unprecedented drought. We’re forced to extreme measures.”
The salmon transport has been going on since February, with 35,000 gallon tanker trucks being used to take salmon the 90 minute drive from hatcheries to the ocean via the freeway. All five major government hatcheries in Central Valley will release the young salmon directly into the bay, rather than into the river where they will surely fail and die.
The drought is now in its fourth year, with water usage under certain restrictions. Last month it was reported that over 12 million trees succumbed to the drought last year alone, while prior to that the state started to tap into prehistoric reserves to acquire freshwater.
Via Huffington Post