A predictable eruption occurs at Katmai National Park and Preserve annually as salmon burst from the northern Pacific Ocean and into park waters. Sockeye (also known as red) salmon return from the ocean, where they have spent two or three years. Navigating first across the open ocean, and then up rivers, lakes, and streams, they return to the headwater gravel beds of their birth to deposit their own young before dying. Their size, averaging 5 to 7 pounds, varies proportionally to how long they spend feeding at sea.
For a draft list of fish species found in Katmai, Alagnak, Aniakchak, and other Southwest Alaska Parklands from the Southwest Alaska Network for inventory and monitoring (SWAN I&M) click here.
Did You Know?
The world's largest run of sockeye salmon occurs in Bristol Bay, Alaska each summer. Part of that salmon run move into Katmai National Park and Preserve through the Naknek and Alagnak rivers.