For the fifth year in a row, the City of SeaTac released more than 150 Coho salmon fry into Des Moines Creek.

The event took place at Des Moines Creek Trail on Saturday morning, April 27, 2024. About four dozen residents showed up for an opportunity to name a fish and release it into the creek. Participating in the event were Councilmembers James W. Lovell and Joe Vinson along with their family members.

Before the release of the salmon, the crowd received an educational lesson on the lifespan of the salmon and how locals can protect the waterways where salmon grow and spawn. Families could also play a game to win chocolate fish.

153 salmon were released at the water’s edge onto a fish slide and into the creek. Salmon are an important part of the Pacific Northwest Ecosystem and have been for hundreds of years. In recent years, salmon populations have decreased. Because of this, local hatcheries help raise salmon eggs for release into creeks and the Puget Sound to keep fish populations stable.

After release, they will spend about a year feeding and growing in the creek before migrating out to the Puget Sound and ocean. There, they continue to grow for about a year and a half.
Adult Coho Salmon weigh about 8-12 pounds and are between 24-30 inches long.

At the end of their life, the salmon will return to their “natal stream,” or the stream they were born in, to spawn. They will lay eggs and their bodies become a source of nutrients for the
stream ecosystem.

To learn more about how you can help keep the salmon’s habitat healthy by watching out for harmful run off, please visit the City of SeaTac’s blog.

In January, the City received a permit to raise the salmon eggs until they are old enough to be released into the Des Moines Creek. The salmon tank sat in the lobby of the SeaTac Community Center for the past couple of months allowing members of the community an opportunity to watch the salmon grow from eggs to fry (baby salmon).


Photos courtesy City of SeaTac: