Salmon Life-Cycle

Late in the winter, the baby salmon hatch. Scientist call these newly hatched salmon alevin. They are weird looking, with huge eyes and a pouch full of egg yolk attached to their bellies. You can see their hearts pumping through their transparent skin! For a few weeks they stay hidden in the gravel, living off their egg yolk. As the yolk gets used, the pouch shrinks and then disappears. Scientists call this "buttoning up"

Borrowed from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service "The Pacific Salmon and Steelhead Coloring Book"

 

Once the yolk is gone, the baby salmon, called fry, get hungry, and leave their gravel nests. They will eat anything that floats by, but insects are their favorite! Chum, pink, and sockeye fry migrate to the sea soon after leaving the nest, but young chinook salmon, coho salmon, and steelhead spend 4-18 months living in streams.

Borrowed from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service "The Pacific Salmon and Steelhead Coloring Book" 

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