U.S. House passes HR 3144, endangers Salmon

The U.S. House today voted today to pass HR 3144, which undo's some much needed relief for our salmon runs, including spilling more water from hydro, and prevents more studies on other ways to help salmon. The actions being repealed have been crucial to our current run's recovery, but Northwest salmon will be headed back to extinction with HR 3144.

Our organization is an apolitical one, but we view this issue as both a natural resource and economical issue. Without natural and hatchery anadromous fish, many Idaho small town economies will dry up further. If you want to be able to continue to fish salmon in Idaho, after seeing many previous seasons cancelled due to low numbers, study the issue and contact your U.S. Senator.

See the release for more information: https://www.idahorivers.org/newsroom/2018/4/24/us-house-passes-hr-3144


  • Sockeye Salmon are an endangered species.
  • Some sockeye travel 3 river systems and 6000 feet elevation before they spawn and die.
  • 100 million juvenile hatchery salmon are released into Columbia Basin each year. Less than one percent make it to the ocean.
  • From 1985-2007, an average of 18 sockeye salmon per year return to spawn.
  • Many Columbia Basin salmon populations are already extinct. 13 more are listed as endangered or threatened.
  • Before Columbia Basin dams, there were runs of salmon 12 months a year.
  • An average of one million returning adult fish pass Bonneville dam ( < 8% of an average run 100 years ago).
  • Before Grand Coulee Dam, the endless gravel beds above were some of the best salmon spawning in the world, known to the June Hogs (100+ pound salmon). After dam completion, the run completely died within 5 years.
  • In the 2006 summer, 3 sockeye completed the 900 miles to spawn, approaching extinction.
  • In 2008, a federal judge ordered Columbia Basin dams to spill water for 2 months, simulating the natural river. Juvenile salmon migrated more freely to the ocean in this time.
  • In the 2010 summer, over 1300 hundred of these fish returned to spawn, the best return since the dams were built. They returned to Idaho's Red Fish Lake, named after red fish that used to change the color of the lake red.
Colby Blair