If you have the heart of an artist or simply a deep love of all that is outdoors, you will be captivated by the colors, the reflections, the movement, and the sheer determination of these magificent creatures. Every second is in motion, so the scene is constantly shifting. Sometimes it was a kaleidescope sensation of colors; opalesce in other moments. The red salmon and army green head shimmers beneath the current and the light changes the colors all the time. For an instant, sometimes you can see the eyes or mouth or fins or tail. There'll be white water from the fish jumping. Other times it's a beautiful abstract painting of reds, yellows, oranges, blues and greens.
The female lays her eggs in the gravel beneath the water in several spots and the males will fight to fertilize it. After they spawn, the salmon die. Marine rich nutrients from life in the ocean are released into the river and ecosystem.
The eggs that don't get washed away, will remain where the mother salmon laid them through the winter where they grow into an embryo. When it's time in the spring, the tiny salmon wiggle free from their soft shell while retaining the yolk sac for nutrients. At this stage they are called an alevin. Once their yolk sac is absorbed they are considered fry. They have the nickname of "buttoned up fry" because there's a visible seam underneath their belly.
The roundtrip distance for these salmon from the fresh water rivers to the ocean is about 4000 km (2285 miles). Most salmon live four to five years. Varying numbers of survival say one to two percent of hatched salmon make into adulthood to reproduce.