General News · 1st November 2018
Cortes creeks are full and bubbling happily. This is most welcome after the abysmal returns of spawning salmon last year. Since record-keeping by streamkeepers in 2013, mid-October has been the most consistent time for spawners to return to spawn on Cortes.
For the sake of the salmon and adjoining property owners, please observe the following protocol for watching spawning salmon: no walking in the creek; no dogs would be best but at least on leashes and out of the creek; approach salmon quietly & slowly AND from downstream (that way, if you startle the salmon, they will swim upstream rather than downstream where they came from); BE RESPECTFUL OF PRIVATE PROPERTY. There are new landowners on either side of Basil Creek, so we suggest observing the chum at the mouth of the creek where it empties into Squirrel Cove, or at the new signed access just below the restored open-bottom arch. Of course, the lower reaches of Hansen and Whaletown Creeks also flow through private property.
FOCI and streamkeepers are planning a community celebration of salmon in late October, with a tour of the restoration work from last fall, so look for the announcement.
The usual first signs of spawners are seeing fish rising to the surface in the bays adjoining major creeks, and an increase of seagull activity in the area. Any information on salmon coming into Cortes creeks would be very helpful, and can be directed to any of the Cortes Streamkeepers: Mike Manson, Rick Kolstead & Deb Peters, Chris Napper, Chris & Debbie Dragseth, Elizabeth Anderson, Max Thayson, Leona Jensen, Christine & Cec Robinson.