Tens of thousands of salmon return to spawn in Kitsap Peninsula streams every year, while the Peninsula’s marine shorelines are critical for supporting the growth and survival of salmon offspring.
Salmon Species on the Kitsap Peninsula
- Chum (also called dog salmon) usually live three to five years and are the most abundant salmon in Kitsap streams. They are found in most Kitsap Streams during fall, with peak populations in late November.
- Coho (or silver salmon) live two to three years, returning to most Kitsap streams shortly before the chum first arrive in the fall. Coho populations also peak in late November.
- Chinook (or king or blackmouth salmon) live up to seven years, but most return to spawn after three or four years. Adult chinook are found in only a few Kitsap locales, including Curley, Blackjack, Gorst, Barker, Clear and Dogfish creeks, during late August and September, but Kitsap shorelines are very important to juveniles.
- Steelhead are rainbow trout that spend part of their life in salt water. They do not necessarily die after their first spawning but may return to the ocean and before coming back to spawn again. They are found throughout the winter months (until late April) in Chico, Curley, Gorst, Barker and Blackjack creeks. Other streams, including Liberty Bay tributaries, Steele Creek and Hood Canal, have habitat that support steelhead.