by Eric Ettlinger
The 2012-13 spawning season is off to an auspicious start. We’ve already received 12.5 inches of rain—far above average for this time of year—and with the rains come the salmon. The first coho salmon of the year were seen on Sunday near the Leo T. Cronin Fish Viewing Area. Today we saw two of these fish actively spawning on a fresh redd. Another redd was seen yesterday in Samuel P. Taylor State Park that had characteristics typical of a Chinook (king) salmon redd, including a deep pit and sharp edges. Chinook salmon typically spawn at this time of year but we haven’t seen Chinook spawn in Lagunitas Creek since 2008. We’re excited by the possibility of Chinook spawning, but we need to see a fish before we can conclude that Chinook have actually returned to Lagunitas Creek.
Most of Lagunitas Creek is still running high and brown after last night’s rain, but salmon spotting should get easier over the holiday weekend. Happy Thanksgiving!