Kokanee salmon are landlocked sockeye/red salmon. This means they never travel to the ocean from the stream they were born in; instead, they go to lakes to live their adult years. Kokanee salmon start out as eggs laid by females in a stream gravel nest called a redd, then hatch into alevin and continue to feed on their egg sacs, staying in the gravel nest. After this stage they grow into fry that continue to live in the gravel for about one month and start to feed on zooplankton, the primary food source of Kokanee. The Kokanee then enter the juvenile stage, the transition between fry and adult. At this point they begin making their way in schools from the stream they were born in to the lake where they spend their adult lives. If they live to be an adult Kokanee salmon, they spend a few years as a non-mating adult. Chinook salmon, eagles, and humans are the primary predators of Kokanee salmon. They also may be killed off due to competition for habitat, change in water temperature, sedimentation, and changes in oxygen in the water. When they are about 4-5 years it is time to spawn. They change color to a red body with a gray-green head. The male has a hump with a hooked mouth while the female stays relatively in the same shape as pre-mating. Adults return to the same stream that they hatched to spawn, lay eggs, and die. The cycle is then repeated by the surviving offspring.
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