Valve shut off leads to salmon deaths at Sitka hatchery

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SITKA, Alaska (AP) - Officials say a possible act of vandalism at a Sitka hatchery resulted in the deaths of more than 1,000 young coho salmon.

The Daily Sitka Sentinel reports a valve for a hose leading to a large fresh water tank was found to be shut off last week at the Sitka Sound Science Center hatchery.

The valve shut off caused the water level to fall to a critical stage in the tank that contained about 16,000 salmon.

Center executive director Lisa Busch says staff members first believed the valve could have been turned off by accident, possibly by a child visiting with a family. But, she says, turning the valve requires some strength.

Officials say the center is installing surveillance cameras and taking steps to secure the water valves against tampering.



 
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