The Salmon Run

One of David Attenborough’s Nature’s Great Events series, the Salmon Run is a spectacular annual migration of billions of Salomon who feed and nourish the Pacific Northwest region of North America.

The salmon themselves are a sight worth seeing but the surrounding ecosystem is dependent on them bringing nutrients from the sea inland. As the swim upriver to spawn many creatures feed on them and thus they nourish the whole surrounding environment.

During the late summer months Bears and Eagles are among the common predators that fish the eagles along the rivers of British Columbia and Alaska.

Any trip to the wilds of the Pacific coast though will bring you very close to nature and guarantee a spectacular wildlife encounter.

Orcas also hunt for salmon

Bear Feeding Time

The main attraction for wildlife viewing during the Salmon Run are Grizzlies. The Massive Grizzly depends on the salmon for the vast majority of its protein and uses the abundant fish in the streams to fatten up for winter.

On leaving hibernation in the spring bears can be very emaciated and need to eat quite a lot to put back on their weight. For this reason both the Black and Grizzly bears are omnivorous, eating both plants and animals. However as Fall arrives and it is nearly time to sleep though the winter again berries end up being a limited energy source. While both bears are able to eat anything throughout their range it is the coastal bears who have an advantage given the amount of salmon in their range.

The Grizzly Bears that live up North can have quite a short season to fatten up for the winter. Because of this they take advantage of the amazing amounts of salmon swimming upstream to spawn.

All along the coast Grizzlies can be spotted waiting at rivers, swimming into them and hunting in the shallows. However there are a few places that are better than others to see this amazing spectacle.

The famous Brooks Falls in Katmai

Grizzley Bears in the early summer before going to eat the salmon run

Watching Bears

All bears black, Grizzly and brown take advantage of the feast of the Salmon Run

Kodiak Island Bears

Bald Eagles also enjoy the bonanza of salmon during the late summer in Western North America

Timing of the Salmon Run