Kids Witness Release of 500K Baby Salmon Into San Pablo

On June 12, Golden State Salmon Association teamed up with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), Richmond Police Activities League (PAL), City of Richmond, and Salty Lady Sportfishing to give inner-city kids a chance to watch 500,000 baby fall-run salmon from the Mokelumne Fish Hatchery begin their ocean journey.

In 2022, GSSA worked with CDFW and the City of Richmond to identify and win permission for this release, which has been used every year since. This site provides a big survival benefit compared to the traditional CDFW release sites near Vallejo because of its closer location to the Golden Gate Bridge and open ocean. Talking with Suzanne Phan of ABC 7 Bay Area, GSSA’s Tristan Merlaud said, “It’s the shortest distance for them with less predators and less dangers for them before they can get to the open ocean where they can get away from other fish and be safe.”

The Richmond PAL sees this as an annual event their kids can learn from and enjoy. Jared Davis’ charter fishing and whale watching boat Salty Lady has again graciously volunteered to take the kids to see the release close up from the water. In past years this has been a first boat ride for some or all of these local kids.  

GSSA executive director Scott Artis said, “GSSA is happy to continue the partnerships with the City of Richmond, the Richmond Police Activities League, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife to see these fish released in a spot where they’ll survive in high numbers. It’s important to provide a fun learning opportunity for local kids to get to know their local waterways and wildlife. This is the perfect way to create new salmon stewards and protect a keystone species for future generations.”