The Atlantic salmon or ‘King of Fish’ is both the largest and best known fish that lives in Scotland’s rivers. Dunning and Royal Dunkeld Primary Schools had the opportunity to get up close by looking after 100 salmon eggs in their classrooms as part of the Salmon in the Classroom project run by the Tay District Salmon Fishery Board and Greenspace Rangers.
100 orange pea-sized eggs were delivered to the classroom with an introduction to the wondrous life cycle of Atlantic salmon. The salmon eggs were kept in a tank in a small fridge at a temperature before 5oc. Once the eggs hatch they are known as alveins and have an attached yolk sac that feeds them for 30 days.
The alvein were then released into nearby burns where they will start feeding themselves and grow into parr. We then studied the burn measuring width, depth, temperature and rate of flow using very scientific objects – oranges and ping pong balls!
The schools also enjoyed trips to the Tay District Salmon Fishery Board hatchery to see trays and trays of eggs as well as adult fish and learn about how the fish are protected by River Bailiffs.
The school will return to the burns in June with the River Bailiffs to see young salmon using electrofishing. A big thanks to the Tay District Salmon Fishery Board staff for all their help.
More information about these amazing and declining fish can be found on the Atlantic Salmon Trust website -http://www.atlanticsalmontrust.org/