Underwater photo of a Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in Blue Creek, a tributary of the Klamath River in northern California. Blue Creek is important for chinook salmon because of its relatively cool water temperature in comparison to the warmer Klamath River that stresses the species. The Yurok tribe has purchased the block of land around Blue Creek watershed with the profits generated from the sale of forest carbon offsets. It is of great cultural importance to them that the habitat of the Chinook salmon stays healthy. © Kevin Arnold


State of Salmon in California

Fly fishers fishing in a riverFly fishers fishing in a river. © The Nature Conservancy

Salmon Matter

Coho salmon, Chinook salmon and steelhead are iconic species of the Pacific a. For at least 2 million years, salmon and steelhead have existed in coastal areas from Baja California through Alaska. They are an important part of our economy and cultural heritage. But throughout California, wild salmon are disappearing—as are the ecosystems, jobs and way of life that depend on them.

Jennifer Carah, an applied scientist on The Nature Conservancy's California staff, plants a logging device used to record and collect water temperature data from streams in the Garcia River Forest near Boonville, CaliforniaJennifer Carah, an applied scientist on The Nature Conservancy’s California staff, plants a logging device used to record and collect water temperature data from streams in the Garcia River Forest near Boonville, California. The data is used by the Conservancy to develop priorities and strategies for protecting and improving habitat conditions for species like Coho salmon in the face of climate change. In 2004, the Conservancy and the Conservation Fund acquired this heavily cut Garcia River forest property to restore important habitat and to help reduce global warming by removing greenhouse gases from the air and setting a new model for sustainable forest management by a non-profit organization. © Bridget Besaw

The Status of Salmon in California

Formerly known as California Salmon Snapshots, The Status of Salmon in California is a collaborative, information-sharing website combining the knowledge of the California Department of Fish & Wildlife, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and over 100 salmon conservation partners. This is the most comprehensive salmon information in California, presenting the status and progress (or health?) of our anadromous salmon and steelhead populations, the work of the salmon restoration community to restore their habitat and populations, and is critical to the on-going recovery of the state’s salmon species. These Salmon Snapshots will help guide state-wide salmon recovery to the places where we can have the greatest impact.

Our Team

The Nature Conservancy

has over 60 years of experience in conservation and restoration of habitats and ecosystems, and is dedicated to protecting nature for people today and for future generations. In California, The Nature Conservancy develops restoration strategies and implements demonstration projects using innovative techniques that we and our partners are scaling throughout California’s salmon and steelhead habitat.

The salmon conservation community

involve many people working in non-profit conservation organizations, federal, state, and local resource agencies, water agencies, tribes, and private entities, such as timber companies. Over 100 organizations around the state are listed here that are involved in salmon recovery and habitat restoration efforts. Learn about the restoration partners and their projects in the Salmon Snapshot watersheds.