Latin name: Salmo salar
Size: Can grow up to 64lb
Where: Garbh Uisge at Callander Meadows; Pots of Gartness; Rivers Teith, Endrick, and Dochart
When: Spring and autumn
One of the greatest wildlife spectacles the Park has to offer is the autumn salmon run. From September onwards, when the rivers are in spate, the gleaming, silvery fish leap and tumble up seemingly unscaleable waterfalls to get back to their spawning grounds to breed.
The National Park is an important European stronghold for the fish, with the Rivers Teith, Dochart and Endrick all declared Special Areas of Conservation partly to help to protect their Atlantic salmon stocks.
The salmon have an amazing life story. Born in the headwaters of the river, they stay there for up to four years before heading out to sea in spring. The fish we see jumping up to 12 feet high up the rapids and falls have been at sea for up to three years – yet they remember exactly where they were born and how to get back there. Unlike the Pacific salmon, not all our salmon die after spawning. Some will make the journey to the sea and back up to four times in their lifetime – always returning to the river where they were born.
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