Salmon Carcass Tossing! Ew, right?! Why on Earth would we do that?! Three words: marine derived nutrients. Let’s break down what that is. First, marine, means “from the sea.” Second, derived, means “comes from.” Lastly, nutrients, means “the compounds used by life to live and grow!”
Our salmon carcass tossing trip plays an important role in moving those marine derived nutrients to the forest. When hatchery salmon return from the ocean they are harvested for eggs and milt to start a new generation of salmon. It’s our task to take the carcass of the harvested salmon and return it to historic nesting grounds! This transports all those essential nutrients that the salmon absorb while out at sea to the rivers where the next generation grows!
Last but not least, check out the Salmon Life Cycle song to learn more about salmon life cycle!
Other Salmon Resources: As Long as the River Runs examines the violence and civil disobedience leading up to the hallmark decision in U.S. v. Washington, with particular reference to the Nisqually Indians of Frank’s Landing in Washington. This is a groundbreaking documentary produced by Carol Burns with Hank Adams originally released in 1971. Use this salmon parts worksheet to accompany a dissection activity. 137 Species Rely on Pacific Salmon– this printable poster from Salmon Nation nicely illustrates the concept of salmon as a keystone species. Salmonids: In Troubled Water Recommended by one of our fabulous teachers, who said ” Students can dissect a salmon, play games, and the best one is they can choose a level (easy, medium, hard) and pretend they are a salmon from the time the egg is laid and try to survive. It’s a hard life! We are all dead salmon here.”
sčədadxʷ Video from Salmon Defense -sčədadxʷ (salmon) is an animated short featuring Billy Frank Jr. that takes the viewer up the river through the eyes of the salmon showing its pristine environment; its connection to the Pacific Northwest People; the arrival of the settlers; habitat degradation; the unification of people throughout the world working together to save salmon and salmon habitat.
Check out this Salmon Activity Book from the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission! It has word searches, mazes, pictures to color, info about the native tribes that depend on salmon, and a whole lot more.
Try this salmon game – Trees to Seas with your students!
- Salmon Board Game Parts -Print off these beautiful board pages with art from Nikki McClure!
- Salmon Board Game Instructions – loaded with excellent background information!
- Trees to Seas Follow-up Activity – thoughtful, engaging questions to wrap it all together
Salmon, Water and Forests in the Classroom: Created by Olympia School District, Salmon Water and Forests was our featured curriculum for Summer Teachers Institute 2012. It is a compilation of Salmonids in the Classroom by Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail Education Project, Salmon Rescue Curriculum (WDFW), The Salmon Box: An Educational Curriculum about Pacific Salmon,Wenatchee River Salmon Festival Teacher Packet, Forests of Washington: Forest Ecosystems and People and from Project Learning Tree Environmental Education Activity Guide.