Q:

Why do salmon swim upstream?

A:

Quick Answer

Salmon return to rivers from the ocean and swim upstream to their original hatching place to lay and fertilize their eggs. Swimming upstream is hard work, and only the strongest complete the journey and spawn the next generation of salmon.

Know More
Why do salmon swim upstream?
Credit: Daniel J Cox Photographer's Choice Getty Images

Full Answer

Each species of salmon follows its own schedule of return to the birth stream for reproducing. Experts believe that an inborn sense of smell guides each species of salmon to its original hatching grounds. When the fish leave the salt water of the ocean and enter the fresh water of the stream, they stop eating. Spawning is the last thing salmon do before they die.

Learn More
Sources:

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why do salmon jump?

    A:

    Salmon jump to clear obstacles in their path while travelling to their spawning grounds. Salmon hatch in freshwater rivers and then swim downstream to reach the ocean, where they mature. When they reach adulthood, the salmon swim back upstream to reach the spawning grounds where they hatched. To travel upstream, salmon have to jump up and over obstacles, such as waterfalls and rapids.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Where do salmon live?

    A:

    Salmon live in rivers, oceans and lakes. They are native to the tributaries of the North Atlantic and Pacific oceans but have been introduced to other areas such as the Great Lakes in North America and Patagonia.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do salmon eat?

    A:

    It is common for salmon to feed on other fish and zooplankton. What a salmon eats varies greatly depending on the region.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How much do salmon weigh?

    A:

    According to the NOAA Office of Protected Resources, a program under the U.S. Department of Commerce, salmon can weigh up to 120 pounds. This weight has been recorded for chinook salmon, the largest Pacific salmon species. On average, however, chinook weigh around 40 pounds.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore