Dillingham agent shares fish knowledge at Salmon Camp

Our Dillingham agent, Gabe Dunham, spent time with Bristol Bay area students this summer, teaching them about the human dimensions of fisheries.


Students at Salmon Camp practice operating an ROV. Photo by Gabe Dunham.

The students were participating in the annual Salmon Camp, sponsored by Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation. Located on the shores of Lake Aleknagik, the camp provides high school and middle school students the opportunity to learn about Bristol Bay ecology and salmon biology, and management.

The campers learned about limnology, the study of the biological, chemical and physical features of lakes, and took measurements of lake temperature, dissolved oxygen, and turbidity. The students also learned about the role of technology in science, and used a remote operated vehicle (ROV) in the lake to look for fish and at fish habitat. At the camp, Dunham used an educational “beans game” to teach students how fishery management decisions affect resource users. Students fished for beans under several management scenarios to simulate real-world salmon harvest by different user groups. Students then discussed how each scenario related to factors of allocation, resource health, and economics. IMG-6111

Dunham began working with the Salmon Camp students in 2014, many of whom are involved in sport, commercial and subsistence salmon fishing.

“It was a good complement to the rest of the camp, which focused mostly on the ecology and life cycle of fish,” said Dunham.