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First Nation Shell Middens And True Oysters

One of the now rare species of oysters in the Pacific Northwest is the Olympia oyster, Ostrea lurida...

Zenaspis: Lower Devonian Bony Fish Of Podolia, Ukraine

A Devonian bony fish mortality plate showing a lower shield of Zenaspis podolica (Lankester, 1869)...

Oil in Water Beauty: Euhoplites of Folkstone

Sheer beauty — a beautiful Euhoplites ammonite from Folkstone, UK. These lovelies have a pleasing...

Carnotaurus sastrei: Flesh Eating Bull

Carnotaurus sastrei, a genus of large theropod dinosaurs that roamed the southern tip of Argentina...

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Musings in Natural History—meant to captivate, educate and inspire.
Palaeontology & Life Sciences—History & Indigenous Culture

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The Queen Charlotte Islands are at the western edge of the continental shelf and form part of Wrangellia, an exotic terrane of former island arcs, which also includes Vancouver Island, parts of western mainland British Columbia and southern Alaska. While we’ll see that there are two competing schools of thought on Wrangellia’s more recent history, both sides agree that many of the rocks, and the fossils they contain, were laid down somewhere near the equator.

They had a long, arduous journey, first being pushed by advancing plates, then being uplifted, intruded, folded, and finally thrust up again. It’s reminiscent of how pastry is balled up, kneaded over and over, finally rolled out, then the process is repeated again.

How long have salmon been making the trek to the sea, the rivers and back again? We are all familiar with the image of salmon returning to fresh water, to the rivers of their youth, to spawn and complete their lifecycle, in fact, it is one of the staple images of British Columbia. As adults, we bring our children to witness this cycle, rushing to the banks of our local rivers to watch as the adults, keen in their fight for reproduction and survival, struggle to complete their epic journeys against currents and predators. Arriving as they do, year upon year, season upon season, it seems to us that this is how it has been since time immortal. But we now have evidence that migration to the sea may be a relatively recent behaviour.

Have you watched salmon leaping and jumping seemingly impossible hurtles to return to the place of their birth? Many times I've watched the ritual with wonder.

While we think of this migration as having gone on "forever" from sea to river to stream. It seems it is a relatively recent phenomenon.

Salmon have permeated First Nations mythology and have been prized as an important food source for thousands of years.