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If one was to track down the DNA of a salmon, that is, it’s true signature, they would be astounded by where all it has been and eventually ends up.  It might seem that when a spawning salmon dies, the river bed is where if finally  ends up. Wrong. The salmon becomes food for many organisms once it is dead and is far more reaching than one might first imagine.

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How so? Well,  dead fish often end up in other places than just  the waters from where they came.  For example:  when a bear eats a dead spawned out salmon, it may drag it into the woods.  So, the carcass of the dead fish itself then becomes food for land organisms that may also eat on it.   Or a bear may  defecate  in the woods, leaving nutrients that plants eat to make berries.  In turn, the berries are eaten by birds.  Interestingly, new genetic studies indicate that feathers of birds can contain some dna chain of the salmon’s signature.

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So a salmon’s signature can be found in many places.  Simplifying natural processes comes with great difficulty when  deciphering ecological tracks and using various tools to measure them by. But now, with the science of genetics, we have yet another tool to help trace movements of fundamental elements that are vital to keep ecological cycles pure and functioning properly. With more sophisticated technologies comes ever more simplified revelations of the elemental. We may use telescopes and microscopes to see beyond the naked eye, but in the end everything is simply just a part of something else.

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