Written by Katie Kuszma at Narrability
The purpose of this oral history project is to illuminate the value of Chinook (or King) salmon fishing in the Monterey Bay. Historically, Santa Cruz and it’s neighboring Monterey Bay fishing communities have been fishing for salmon for well over a century.
Due to overfishing, dams, pollution, industrialization, drought, and fisheries management issues, today’s wild salmon fisheries face a crisis of survival. According to the Department of Fish and Wildlife, Chinook salmon are on endangered and threatened species lists throughout California, Oregon, and Washington. In order to alleviate some of the pressures on salmon, hatchery programs throughout California and the Pacific Northwest have been implemented. Locally, the Monterey Bay Salmon and Trout Project (MBSTP) has several projects for enhancement through hatchery and educational programs, including Chinook net pens, on which this project focuses.