Salmon need cold, clean, well oxygenated water. Even salmon raised in hatcheries spend some portion of their lives in a river or stream. Without healthy watersheds, salmon cannot survive.
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Salmon display silvery colors at sea and vivid reds, greens, browns, and even purple in freshwater. These freshwater colors may become even more pronounced in males during mating or fighting rituals.
Young salmon moving to sea travel at night to avoid predators. They also drift backwards facing upstream which may allow them to continue feeding and also may provide better control in the downstream current.
Like many fish, salmon have 300 degree vision. It is only the area immediately behind them that they cannot see.
Salmon have an extremely keen sense of smell. Studies indicate that salmon can smell one part per million which translates to one drop in 250 gallons, hundreds of times more acute than that of dogs.
Salmon in their saltwater phase travel an estimated 18 miles a day, but they are capable of maintaining an average of 34 miles per day over long distances. Salmon often travel much more slowly to feed.