How to Use Your Hand to Identify the Five Types of Alaskan Salmon

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How to Use Your Hand to Identify the Five Types of Alaska Salmon

If you visit Alaska during the summer season there is a good chance you can find a creek or river to watch the salmon run.  Most salmon in Alaska live mostly in the saltwater ocean.  When they are mature and it is time for them to reproduce, they “run up” freshwater rivers in the salmon run to spawn.

While your family is checking out the running or spawning salmon, you should take the opportunity to teach your kids about one of the most important food sources in Alaska using their hands.   It’s pretty easy to do!

  • Chum rhymes with thumb.  Chum are also known as dog fish because it is the least desirable type – and they were fed to the dogs.
  • You can sock someone’s eye out with your pointing finger.  So that’s Sockeye, also known as red.
  • Your largest finger, or your king finger, is your middle.  It is for King Salmon, also known as Chinook.
  • Your ring finger stands for the Silver Salmon, also known as coho.
  • Pinkie = pink, obviously!  Pink salmon are also known as humpback or humpies.