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Location: Redding, CA, United States

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Dancing Salmon Home Update from Will Doolittle

Posted By: Will Doolittle
To: Members in Dancing Salmon Home Documentary

Project News From New Zealand

Thanks to the financial, spiritual and moral support from each of you, I have been able to return to Aoteroa (New Zealand), to gather more footage and interviews, to be able to tell the story more completely.  I'm happy to report that your faith in my efforts and the larger vision of the Winnemem Wintu people is bearing fruit.  

I've been able to get more footage of the McCloud Chinook salmon in New Zealand's waters, as well as interviews with a university professor about the introduction of salmon here in the late 1800s, and early 1900s.  

In addition the Trap and TrNsfer Committee of the Maori people of the South Island have been graciously hosting me as I follow them in their mission of protecting their sacred longfin eel by catching them and transferring them safely around the dams. 

Today, the team netted a large adult female eel, in the early stages of her migration changes.  She's about 80 years old, so has been in the upper waters, above the dams, since before they were built.  If she were to head downstream toward the sea, where she wants to mate and spawn deep in the Pacific, she would likely be chopped up by the dams' turbines, and the 600-1 million eggs would never have a chance to return from the sea as tiny glass eels. 

The Maori-Eel story is the mirror of the Winnemem-salmon story.  Two proud peoples, who know who they are, sustained by, and protecting their sacred water relatives. 

Thank you again for your continued spiritual support for my efforts, and for the larger vision of the Winnemem people. Any additional financial support you can add, no mTtsr how small, will help to bring this important story to a wide audience. 

With gratitude and respect, 
Will Doolittle