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Saving Salmon to Save Orca Part 2: NCW Rivers Critical Habitat for Salmon, Steelhead

Orcas in Pacific Northwest waters are hungry. Their preferred food – salmon – are endangered just like them. The orcas have struggled over the last decade with pollution, boat noise and a lack of prey – chinook salmon.

Although far from the Pacific Ocean and Puget Sound, North Central Washington plays a critical role in the success of the endangered orcas that live off Washington’s coast.

In this multi-part series on KOHO, we’re exploring why the orca population has dwindled and how North Central Washington is part of the solution.

Yesterday in part one – the state’s Orca Task Force, convened by the governor in March, and a public comment period that ended yesterday on recommendations by the Task Force’s sub-committees. The Task Force will have a final report out Friday.

In part two of our story, we look at one specific recommendation – shoring up salmon populations to provide more food for the orcas, and the role North Central Washington plays in developing those plans. Dan Langager reports.


Photo: Baby chinook salmon, Upper Columbia Salmon Recovery Board

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