sturgeon

Rowan Moore Gerety / Northwest Public Radio

Salmon are a touchstone in the Northwest...in food, in nature, and now, in the damage wrought by the ongoing drought: less than half of returning Sockeye are expected to survive to the end of summer. But another important fish is dying in unprecedented numbers too: the massive white sturgeon native to the Columbia River.

Leaburg Hatchery

The trout and sturgeon show pond at the Leaburg Hatchery on the McKenzie River will be closed for renovations beginning Monday, July 7.

The construction is expected to take 4 to 6 weeks. The show pond will be off-limits but the rest of the hatchery will remain open to the public.

Hatchery Manager Erik Withalm says they have 70 to 90-thousand visitors each year. The show pond has large rainbow trout and a 9-foot long, 350-pound sturgeon.