Storm snags fish spawning on McDonald Creek

The latest work on restoring salmon to McDonald Creek in Elma hit a snag due to the November flooding, the Grays Harbor Stream Team Reported.

Teen activist Jarred Figlar-Barnes said the 22 spawning pairs of hatchery coho donated by the state Department of Fish & Wildlife had made 19 nests, or redds, days before a storm dumped nearly 5 1/2 inches of water on Elma overnight.

“McDonald creek had possibly the worst flooding its had for 10 years. It was even worse than 2007,” Figlar-Barnes said.

After the storm, only four of those redds had survived, but to his surprise, Figlar-Barnes saw six wild coho had ventured into the creek to spawn with a few of the hardier hatchery salmon, making three new redds.

The Mark Reed Hospital District had recently hosted a tree planting around the new Summit Pacific Medical Center. The event had been delayed because of a lack of rain. All the saplings planted during that event have survived the recent flooding.