SEATTLE -- Only in the Northwest can you find families gathering to celebrate a stream littered with the bodies of salmon.
But most people here understand the life cycle of salmon and a lot more do after the party on Piper’s Creek.
The City of Seattle hosts the annual event to educate children and adults how a salmon’s death is a natural and necessary part of that life cycle.
Organizers hope making it more fun will spawn an appreciation of the process and inspire future generations to become salmon creek stewards. So they created a scavengers’ hunt.
Children dash from station to station to gather clues and earn beads. Their journey leads them through a mini watershed. They see spawned out salmon in the last stages of their lives and get close to the carcasses of those whose fight to reproduce is over.
Volunteer naturalists explain how the dead salmon provide food for nature’s scavengers and bring the nutrients of the ocean to the forests.