Looking back at 2008, as autumn turns towards winter, returns of wild Atlantic salmon to North American rivers should provide moments for thoughtful reflection. In many rivers salmon returns increased, and whether this means ocean conditions are changing for the better - or it is just an anomally - is not yet clear.
Check numbers yourself Maine and Newfoundland have some impressive counts.
For Maine returns (Penobscot was above 2,100): http://asf.ca/links.php?id=40
For a spreadsheet of Newfoundland returns, including Exploits above 35,000:
ASF's honoring of Paul Volcker continues to be covered in the news, not least because he has been appointed to a new and important economic advisory capacity by President Elect Barack Obama. Coverage notes his dedication to Atlantic salmon restoration, in addition to economic restoration.
Nat Reed, awarded ASF's Lee Wulff Atlantic Salmon Conservation Award, gets a fine picture in a recent UK Fish and Fly story. Check it out:
This is also a time for both planning and on-the-ground salmon restoration efforts. On the Restigouche, the Watershed Group continues to pursue coordinated restoration to safeguard the future of this magnificent watershed through involving all those who love and use the river:
For the Connecticut River, it is a time of year to continue the program of raising new salmon to fight for this major river's return to Atlantic salmon abundance.
Looking for some great holiday gift ideas for the angler in your life? Visit Anglers Cache for some unique gifts for anyone who would rather be on a river or watching an Atlantic salmon in a pool.
Give the gift of helping to unravel the mystery of Atlantic salmon at sea. Make it personal with Adopt-a-Smolt for yourself or a friend. In 2009 researchers will track YOUR smolt down a river and through a formerly trackless ocean.
ASF Raffle tickets make great stocking stuffers with 26 great prizes.
The purchase of the raffle tickets and other items help support the conservation and research work of the Atlantic Salmon Federation.