Pacific salmon travel hundreds of miles upstream to spawn and ultimately die. Their bodies feed numerous creatures. Now, scientists are beginning to understand how much of the forest is fed by this amazing cycle.

The ambient light dimmed as I kicked away from the surface. Zipped tightly into my drysuit with a cylinder of compressed air strapped to my back, nothing but the grainy sound of my own inhalations accompanied me downwards into the ocean. Twenty, 25, 30 metres deep and I was forced to brighten my underwater lights to identify a large pipe leading away from the industrial farmed salmon processing plant I was investigating. As I neared the end of the pipe the lights illuminated a massive plume of billowing red blood, dispersing directly into Canada’s largest wild salmon migration route. […]

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