Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Salmo The Leaper

October had arrived and with it the salmon. This the king of fish was returning to it's birthplace in the headwaters of the rivers of Northern England driven on by the urge to spawn, thereby ensuring the future of the species. The Atlantic Salmon ( Salmo salar ) is so named after it's ability to leap over waterfalls, which would otherwise impede its journey to the upper reaches of the rivers in which they were born.
At one time I did fish for salmon on the rivers Ribble, Hodder and Lune and have had some memorable encounters with these powerful fish. This year however I have endeavoured to try and capture them using my camera and have found it to be just as exciting, as I photographed them on their long journeys upstream.
I had discovered a location on a Cumbrian River where it is possible to observe the fish as they congregate at the bottom of a powerful waterfall awaiting suitable river conditions to continue their journey. This week I spent time observing and photographing the salmon as they attempted to surmount the waterfall barring their way. Some fish were successful but many fell back to await more suitable conditions when the rivers are in spate enabling them to find ways around these obstacles.
It was a wonderful experience watching fish after fish attempt to make it's way up the river. From now until well into November and December, salmon will continually come into the river and I will return to try and capture more  images of this exciting annual spectacle. I hope the images above convey some of the power and beauty of this the king of fish.


  1. A pleasant diversion from the birds and some excellent images. I particularly like the two close up of the Salmon fighting its way upstream, quite amazing how they ever succeed in reaching their goal. However,all the other pic's convey the fish's struggle admirably.

    Great stuff Brian and I can already see one on Birds2blog by way of a change from the birds.

  2. Amazing captures Brian.
    I've only ever seen this on film before; it must be so exciting to witness it all unfold before you. Excellent.

  3. Pete and holdingmoments thanks for kind comments. Very much appreciated.

  4. Hi Brian

    Excellent photos, what a pity there are no Brown Bears there too.
    Is the site near a very large modern bridge carring a major trunk road over the river?



  5. Dave. Thanks for comments. Enjoyed looking at your various " safaris " in our wonderful part of the world. Unfortunately I am not able to divulge location of salmon leap, at the request of local residents who kindly allowed me access to the river.

    Cheers Dave and thanks for looking.

  6. Absolutely great set of images. Some hours of work went into this.

  7. Hi all,

    Wow! What a great image of salmo fish. Salmo is a genus of fish in the salmon family that includes the familiar species Atlantic salmon and brown trout. The natural distribution of the genus is chiefly European. The salmons and trouts of the Pacific basin belong to another genus, Onchorhynchus. Thanks............

    Wildlife Photography