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Millions of Salmon Released into American River

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SACRAMENTO-

It sounds like something out of a movie, but about 3 million young Chinook Salmon were spawned and then released into the wild.

They’ve been in the Nimbus Hatchery for 6 months, and starting Monday they will be finding their way out to sea.

When it’s time to go, the fish are netted in cement raceways, then sucked up and placed in a tanker truck to make the journey to the American River at Discovery Park.

There, the fish are pushed through yet another large tube and released into the river in about a minute and a half, jumping and swimming away.

But here they also encounter their first predators, bigger fish and Sea Lions.

These fish will swim 100 miles or so all the way to the San Francisco Bay. They will live for two or three years out in the ocean, and hopefully make their way right back to the Nimbus Hatchery.

Out of all the fish released today, it’s estimated that only 2% will make it back to spawn.

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