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Save Our Wild Salmon

by Rocky Barker

ID.statesman.logoSockeye entered the Columbia River this week, beginning a 900-mile migration that very nearly ended 20 years ago.

Only four Snake River sockeye made their way through eight dams and past nets and predators in 1992, a year after the fish that makes its home in Idaho’s Sawtooth Valley was listed as endangered. Only one male completed the final climb up the Snake and Salmon rivers to a weir on Redfish Lake Creek Aug. 4.

Allyson Coonts, the 7-year-old daughter of Sawtooth Hatchery technician Phil Coonts, named the sockeye Lonesome Larry. When then-Idaho Gov. Cecil Andrus put the stuffed fish on his office wall, Lonesome Larry became the symbol of the entire Snake and Columbia salmon restoration program.

Read more from the Idaho Statesman.

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