From the Blog

Feeling the Heat – Except in Newfoundland

Photographing leaping salmon

Big Falls – Humber Leaper – not every leaper is a perfect, graceful image

Sometime, some reader may have the opportunity to try photographing a leaping salmon. Probably the best easily accessible places in North America are Causapscal Falls, in June, at the base of the Gaspé peninsula, and Big Falls on the Humber River in Newfoundland from late June onwards, but there are other locations here and there, wherever wild Atlantic salmon live.

If you have a really modern digital SLR camera you may have an autofocus fast enough. Otherwise, pre-focus on the place you thin, the salmon will leap. Put the ISO at 400, and try to achieve a shutter speed of 1/800th sec. Then hold the camera with the shutter button half depressed. Wait, and probably wait some more. You will need your fastest reflexes when the salmon leaps to push down the button FAST. If you have a fast multi-exposure, try for three.

This is actually tough to do, very wearing, and most shots won’t work. But some will. Would be happy to see what results you get.

For salmon photos, it is actually easier if you fish and have an underwater “point-and-shoot” camera to get a great shot as your friend releases the salmon. But that is another skill.

What’s coming up on the rivers


Sand Hill – What is going on with this river? So far this year there have been 7,099 small salmon and 795 large salmon as of July 24. That is compared to 2010 numbers of 1,173 and 99. This year’s return is way above the 2005-2010 average of 2,718 small and 502 large.

Paradise – The trap has 196 grilse and 15 large salmon


The numbers are in for July 24, and they are exciting.

Exploits – We are now at 35,496 which is less than 8 per cent below 2010′s banner year that had 38,640 by this point.

Campbellton River – 5,125 by July 24, against 3,846 last year.

Great Northern Peninsula – For whatever reason the Torrent numbers continue to lag, at 1569 this year, little more than half the 3,080 for last year. There is some concern here, wondering whether the reason could be mortality issues at sea, whether it does relate to issues associated with the fishway design. Meanwhile, on Western Arm Brook the return has been 1,228, down from 1,722 last year.

Big East River, Hawke's Bay, NL – a great place to watch wild salmon leap








Conne – The south coast Conne River continues to be of concern, with only 1,188 returns

Harry’s River – So far 3,938 salmon have been counted with the DIDSON unit near Stephenville Crossing.

New Brunswick

Restigouche & Upsalquitch – It was late going up on DFO’s website, but the Upsalquitch barrier has good news. By July 15 there were 359 large salmon as opposed to 192 in 2010 and also when compared with the 2003 to 2007 average of 212. This confirms the incredible numbers angled and released this year.

What this official number does not mention is that many are not just large but VERY large, obviously more than 2-seawinter Atlantic salmon. This is what we all want to see, and can only hope it is a harbinger of things to come in the years ahead.

Jacquet River  – Another river with much larger returns, with 111 back by July 15 this year, and only 30 in 2010 and 22 in 2009.

Miramichi – A series of thunderstorms raised levels, but levels have been coming down, and lower temperatures this week should improve on the temperatures of last week.

Blackville Water Levels – Main Southwest Miramichi

Lyttleton – Little Southwest Miramichi


Penobscot – The higher temperatures have brought salmon migration to a virtual stop, with only three salmon found at Veazie this past week. As of July 25 there has been a return of 2,916 – the best numbers since about 1990.

Narraguagus – With 162 returns, this is also been a great year to date, the best since the late 1990s.


Feeling the Heat – Except in Newfoundland

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