What is a ‘salmon cannon’, and how does it work?
When migratory fish like salmon encounter a high, concrete dam, a major problem surfaces: how can they cross it?
One company has found an answer to this that you may not expect. Whooshh Innovations has created a way for transporting salmon and other fish over dams. They call it the salmon cannon.
The creator, Vince Bryan III, purposely spelled it with one ‘n’ to avoid a misnomer. Inside a massive, flexible tube, there is a pressure that acts as a suctioning force. When the salmon swim into the tube, they travel at a steady incline. Then, they are carefully deposited on the other side of the dam. The ride is safe, smooth, and frictionless. It also allows plenty of breathing room for the thousands of fish that move through it each day. In this way, they can still swim upstream to their breeding grounds and preserve their natural reproductive process.
— Animal Planet (@AnimalPlanet) August 20, 2019
Does the salmon canon solve any other issues?
This isn’t the only issue the Whooshh Passage Portal has resolved. The system has other uses as well, like delivering endangered fish species from a hostile environment to one much safer for them. It can remove invasive fish species that pose a threat to the ecosystem. Or, it can filter contaminated, sick fish into a quarantine. Even with all the human activity surrounding the salmon cannon, it maintains a natural order within the marine ecosystem food chain.
Where are their systems located?
There is only one location the salmon canon currently resides, and that is at Chief Joseph Dam within the Columbia River. However, they hope to implement their systems everywhere in America and are even considering taking it to British Columbia. Whether it’s for migration, safety, or relocation, the salmon cannon is a necessary fix to a big problem in which millions of fish share.