Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery (FISH) is a nonprofit organization that champions the annual miracle of salmon in our fragile environment.
The Issaquah Salmon Hatchery is the most visited of all the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's hatcheries. Approximately 350,000 people visit the hatchery each year. FISH volunteers are instrumental in educating these hatchery guests.
FISH volunteers are trained by biologists, watershed managers and hatchery staff to provide accurate and interesting information about salmon to hatchery guests. Volunteers will provide tours to visitors, many of them school-aged children from around the Puget Sound region. The Issaquah Salmon Hatchery regularly sees visitors from around the world who have heard about the magnificant return of salmon to Issaquah Creek.
This is a wonderful place to volunteer, with many different types of volunteer opportunities. In addition to conducting tours of elementary-age children throughout salmon season, volunteers can assist in salmon spawning, assist with summer camp, work in the FISHop on weekends, help out in the egg room, and many other activities. It is a wonderful place to meet like-minded volunteers, whether you are interested in salmon, our watershed, or environmental concerns.
This is a great organization and my sixth year volunteering here. I learn something every year. It's a bit like Disneyland in the fall and helping others to understand salmon, their lifecycle and watershed is a true pleasure. I enjoy working with other volunteers and helping a true community asset.
It is very satisfying to participate in the miracle of the salmon returning to their natal stream. This participation can take the form of helping with hatchery operations (everything from cleaning equipment to spawning the returning salmon) or in educating the public in what they can do to preserve this fabulous legacy. Working together with like-minded people is terrific as well.