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Eugene students raise and release salmon

For two months, students in Eugene have been raising salmon. Last week, they released them into the wild.

The “Fish Eggs to Fry” Program teaches Oregon students about the importance of local chinook salmon. This October, it provided 6,300 eggs to Eugene classrooms.

Elementary students gathered at Alton Baker Park when their fish reached the stage of independent, hungry fry. They delivered them into a side channel of the Willamette River.

Only a fraction of the fry will reach adulthood, according to teacher Tana Shepard. But she said they serve as a keystone species and an important food source for other animals.

Shepard said this curriculum connects students to nature and conservation efforts. It’s funded through EWEB and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Nathan Wilk is a freelance reporter and former reporting intern. He began in radio at a young age, serving as a DJ and public affairs host across Oregon. He is a senior at the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication.