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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Sturgeon Center

The National Fish Hatchery at the Bonneville Dam is an amazing place.  The grounds are beautiful and it's extremely interesting to visit. 
We went into the hatchery building and learned about how the eggs are collected, fertilized, and cared for  prior to hatching.  It was great to find out that the hatchery has a population of salmon that come back to it to spawn that they collect eggs from.  The spawn was over for the year, but timing a visit to coincide with the spawning salmon would be very educational. 
The eggs are kept in small bins with lots of fresh water flowing over them for several months while the young fish form.  After that they transfer them into larger and larger tanks until they are large enough to release. 
There were a few fish feeders by the ponds, so I stopped in the gift store and got some change so we could feed the fish.  These were trout that were 2 feet long and bigger!  It was pretty cool to watch the water swirl as they rushed to eat the food.  I could feed the fish all day! 
The best part of the hatchery is the sturgeon center.  There's an underwater viewing window to go see the prehistoric fish.  Several of them were 6-8 feet long.
The biggest sturgeon is Herman the Sturgeon.  He's 11 feet long, just about 500 pounds, and about 75 years old.  What a stud! 
The sturgeons were simply awesome.  Feeding the fish is fun, but watching the sturgeons is amazing.  They're so big! 

Nearest City: Cascade Locks, OR
Location: N° W°
Time Needed: 1 hour plus
Difficulty: Easy
Kid Friendly: Yes
Additional Info:

1 comment:

  1. I've been there! It's beautiful! It's fascinating to see the process of the fish there! Man, that stergine is huge! Wow!