Coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch):

Coho Stages

Coho Stages

 

C oho salmon spawn from October to December. Harder to spot than pink salmon, coho have bluish-green backs. Male coho turn red when they are ready to spawn, while females are more dull in color. Young coho salmon remain in the watershed for 1-2 years after hatching in spring. In the early 1980’s, there was a large collapse in the coho population in the Puntledge River. In an effort to rebuild the stocks, the Puntledge River hatchery facility was established by DFO. To get them started, they used adult Morrison Creek coho for brood stock (“brood stock” means that eggs and sperm from these adult fish were used to produce fry in the hatchery). Most coho salmon are about three years old when they spawn and complete their life cycle.

Coho fry spend an extra year in the Creek before they head out to sea and therefore get quite a bit bigger than the Chum or Pink Fry.

Coho fry spend an extra year in the Creek before they head out to sea and therefore get quite a bit bigger than the Chum or Pink Fry.

For those that wondered whether the colour was due to 'artistic license' this spawned out coho male in Morrison Creek shows extra tinting is not required.  Photo by Jim Palmer

For those that wondered whether the colour was due to 'artistic license' this spawned out coho male in Morrison Creek shows extra tinting is not required. Photo by Jim Palmer