A record number of Atlantic salmon eggs were laid in the East Machias River last year, an indication that an eight-year effort to restore the endangered species in the river is paying off.
Biologists counted 61 redds, or nests that fish build for spawning, buried in several inches of river gravel spread between Crawford and East Machias. That’s six times the number of redds counted in the East Machias River since the Downeast Salmon Federation began tracking salmon egg nesting patterns there 20 years ago, said Dwayne Shaw, the federation’s executive director.
“This is just huge,” Shaw said. “A number like this hasn’t been seen in the river in decades.”