Herring spawning mayhem!

On March 9 I went down to Point Holmes in Comox and had my first closeup encounter with the herring fleet and a host of gulls and eagles all after these little fish. If you have not had the chance to witness it first hand, it is worth the time to check it out. Always happens early March for a short window period, however not always the same exact location. This year Point Holmes had lots of action. Unfortunately there were lots of dead herring on the beach. Herring do not die after spawning like salmon, they just head back out to sea. There must have been a loss at one or a number of boats, for there were hundreds and hundreds dead on the beach. Along with thousands of gulls and lots of eagles feasting on the bonanza of dead herring and eggs, there were people with buckets scooping them up. It is a time of plenty, and clearly shows the importance of ensuring herring play the huge part they do in the ecosystem. The week after the run, the number of eggs that wash up on the beaches is unbelieveable. In certain areas, they just coat the rocks along the shoreline, or form a large windrow at the high tide line.

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