Category   Natural Events in BC: Pacific Herring Spawning
  Maps of BC 
  Regions & Towns 
  Campgrounds & RVs 
  Fishing & Guides 
  Golf & Golf Vacations 
  Kayaking & Canoeing 
  Outdoor Recreation 
  Parks & Trails 
  Real Estate / Agents 
  Restaurants & Pubs 
  Sightseeing & Tours 
  Skiing & Ski Resorts 
  Whale Watching 
  Wildlife Viewing 
  Business & Shops 
  Conference Facilities 
  Jobs & Employment 
  Spas & Health
  Weddings, Banquets 
  Contact & Advertise 
  Calendar of Events 
  Discussion Forum 
  Facts & Information 
  Photo Gallery 
  Send a Postcard 
  Weather in BC 

Each spring, peaking in March, the Pacific Herring (Clupea harengus pallasi) return to protected inlets on the coast to spawn. Females lay up to 20,000 eggs, which are fertilized when they are laid. On contact with water, the eggs become very sticky, and attach themselves to whatever they contact. The event draws thousands of marine birds and mammals to feed on the bounty.

California and Steller's Sea Lions arrive in herds, and there is great bellowing and barking as they jostle for position in the herring schools. Large numbers of sea ducks, like scoters and Oldsquaw (Clangula hyemalis) gather in rafts, diving to feed on the eggs. Bald Eagles (after all, they are fish-eagles) snatch spawned-out herring from the surface, and gulls of several species feed on the scraps.

The wildlife spectacle continues for two or three weeks. There are excellent viewing opportunities on the east coast of Vancouver Island, with French Creek often being a hot spot.

     Back to Top                                            Web Design by Sage Internet Solutions.
     Copyright (c) 1998 - 2014 Shangaan Webservices Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer.