Salmon don’t swim through urban forests, do they?

Trees cool the river for salmon Photo by Guy Kramer
Trees cool the river for salmon Photo by Guy Kramer

Salmon do swim through urban forests…that is, if there’s a salmon-bearing stream running through it. And students are gaining knowledge as to why trees are so important to salmon thanks to an organization called Sound Salmon Solutions.

Sound Salmon Solutions has good information for educators (including lesson plans) to educate students about the economic, environmental, psychological, and aesthetic benefits of urban forests. Kids learn to connect the importance of urban forests to life of salmon.

Sound Salmon Solutions has a curriculum, Tree Connections, which educates students about the importance of urban forests. The students visit a city-owned park with both an urban forest and a salmon-bearing stream where they test water quality and make their own plant guides.

The students use GPS units to create maps and accurate recordings of where trees are located in the park. Their science teachers then share the information with that park’s city staff to keep on hand for future reference.

DNR has awarded several grants in past years for Sound Salmon Solutions to provide environmental education programs to kids in the Arlington and Marysville area. 

Some funding is provided by the U.S. Forest Service, which is administered through the Washington State Department of Natural Resources’ Urban and Community Forestry Program.