The Sammy Blog

2018 Survive the Sound Migration: May 7 - 18

This was the place to learn about Sammy and his friends' journey as they tried to make it to the finish line! Statistically, only 20% of juvenile salmon survive this migration. There were 48 fish in this race...who was your pick to win?

May 18

All good things must come to an end

Today is the last day of the Survive the Sound Migration! Out of 48 juvenile steelhead, 14 made it to the Pacific Ocean. Team BothellCool’s fish, Sammy, landed 38th in the rankings. (We’re still getting over it.) We learned so much about steelhead during this 12-day journey. We’ll follow a new set of young steelhead next May when another migration begins. We hope you'll join us again!
STS Final Day

The final rankings

The race is over, and 14 steelhead survived the Sound! Our winners are:
  • skʷawǝľ 
  • Sergeant Snackbar 
  • Seven-Fishy-Seven 
  • Little Red 
  • Micro 
  • Goldie 
  • Boom 
  • Neptune 
  • Gry-Fin-Dor 
  • Sushi 
  • Rainbow 
  • Stormy 
  • Anthony’s King Tony 
  • Coder 
Special shout out to our fish, Sammy, who finished in 38th place. You may not have won the race, but you certainly won our hearts. #SurviveTheSound #LongLiveTheKings
STS May 18

May 17

Why are some steelhead easy targets?

One of the reasons steelhead have a hard time is because some of the waters they swim through are contaminated and plagued with disease. Just like people, when fish are unhealthy, they slow down. This makes them an easy meal for predators. Remember…anything that goes down a storm drain in Bothell eventually makes its way – untreated – to Puget Sound. Nothing but rain down the drain, please!

Today’s rankings

With only one day to go, it looks like Stormy could be the last fish to make it to the ocean. Last night Sushi joined her nine successful steelhead friends and celebrated her victory in the Survive the Sound Migration!

We don’t want to be the ones to say it, but it’s not looking too good for the remaining 10 fish. We just lost Swedish and Mackerel.
STS May 17

May 16

Lights out for Lights Off

There are still 14 fish fighting their way to the Pacific. Unfortunately our energy-conserving steelhead, Lights Off, was so good at saving energy that he decided not to use any for rest of the Survive the Sound Migration. You had a good run, buddy.

Today's rankings

Latest victories: Goldie, Boom, Neptune, and Gry-Fin-Dor
Latest casualties: Dawg Paddle and Lights Off
Still trying: Stormy, Sushi, Mackerel, Sam Q. Newsfish, Swedish, Anthony's King Tony, Speedy, Chinook Book Cherie, Rainbow, Bruce, Coder, Venti, Itchy Roe, and Danger

Two days left!
Lights Out
STS May 16

May 15

What are the odds?

If you’ve been following along with the Survive the Sound Migration, you know juvenile steelhead have it pretty rough during their two-week journey towards the Pacific Ocean. Over 80% of them die during their migration attempt! Out of the 48 fish that started this race on May 7, only 25 are still alive. Let’s take good care of our waters to boost their chances of survival.

Today's rankings

It looks like Neptune has a good chance of making it to the ocean with less than 14 miles to go! Overnight we lost a few more fish - Willy, Eddy Gar, and Lunch Box. Will anyone else cross the finish line by Friday?
STS May 15

May 14

Remembering the fallen

Sadly, 40% of our steely friends have become fish food. R.I.P. Sharkbait, Salmon Ella, Ocean Magic, Trigger, Lulu, Killer, Bodhi, The Swish, Coach, Fin-E-Us, Sammy, Bubbles, Blitz, Flashy, Scifi, Puget Pounder, Jaws, Steely, Sea Slough. You guys made us proud.

Why are so many dying?

Many of these fish are meeting their end near the Hood Canal Bridge. The bridge floats, sitting on enormous pontoons that span 83% of Hood Canal’s width and extend 15 feet underwater. Long Live the Kings and their partners are working to find solutions in case these pontoons are obstructing the steelhead migration. 
Hood Canal Bridge

Today’s rankings

Congrats on making it to the Pacific Ocean, skʷawǝľ, Sergeant Snackbar, Seven-Fishy-Seven, Little Red, and Micro! Goldie and Boom are next in line with about 78 miles to go. Will they make it through the gauntlet? We hope so!
STS May 14

May 11

What big teeth you have, Grandma!

Out of nowhere, Little Red zoomed into spot #2, following closely behind Sergeant Snackbar! Overnight we lost Jaws, Scifi, Flashy, and Salmon Ella leaving 37 fish left in the race. Can Sergeant Snackbar hold onto his lead? He’s only 61 miles away from the Pacific Ocean!
Little Red 2nd Pl

Today’s rankings

Sergeant Snackbar, Little Red, and skʷawǝľ are our top three today. There’s a pack of fish about 15 miles behind the leaders that includes Bodhi, Trigger, Killer, Speedy, Lunch Box, Chinook Book Cherie, and Fishy McFishface. It’s still anyone’s race!
STS May 11

May 10

Putting the past behind us

Yesterday was a hard day for all of us, dealing with the overwhelming shock and grief of losing our friend Sammy so early in the race. But he’s not alone. Yesterday we also had to say goodbye to Fin-E-Us, Puget Pounder, Steely, and Sea Slough. But let’s transform all that sadness into some positive energy and cheer on the rest of Sammy’s friends!

Today’s rankings

Sergeant Snackbar pulled ahead of Trigger, with skʷawǝľ closely following in third place. Where’s Killer, you ask? He’s moved back a few spots and is now in fifth place. Snackbar has a five-mile lead on Trigger, but as we know by now, anything can happen in this race!
STS May 10

May 9

R.I.P. Sammy

In a tragic turn of events, Sammy's trek was cut short and he didn't survive the journey. We like to think he at least went peacefully. We'll keep following his friends until the end of the race, knowing that his fishy spirit is giving them extra strength to make it to the finish line. You made us proud, Sammy!
RIP Sammy

Today's rankings

Sammy and Blitz tied for 46th place in the race. So maybe our fish wasn't the winner, but he tried! His journey ended 130.52 miles away from his destination. But in more exciting news, we have a new leader! Trigger has pulled ahead of Killer by about half a mile. Will he be able to hold onto the lead? Check back tomorrow to find out!
STS May 9

May 8

Taking a little breather

Looks like Sammy is resting right now, as he hasn't covered much distance since yesterday. We know the journey can be treacherous, so we don’t blame him for taking a breather. Maybe he’s taking a minute to remember his buddy Lulu, who was the first casualty of this migration. RIP Lulu. 

Today's rankings

Our boy has dropped a few spots in the rankings down to #13, but we’re not giving up on him! The leaderboard has Killer on top followed by Trigger and Sam Q. Newsfish. See all the rankings at
STS May 8

May 7

The race is on! 

The race to #SurviveTheSound has begun! Team BothellCool and thousands of others across the Pacific Northwest have sponsored fish in the first ever endurance race for wild steelhead! We think our fish, Sammy, has what it takes to survive the trek through Puget Sound to the Pacific Ocean, and we’ll be watching closely to see what challenges he encounters along the way.

We’ll be reporting back at least every few days about Sammy’s progress along the way. To follow along, make sure you’re connected with us on Facebook.

Thanks for playing along as we race to #SurviveTheSound and expand awareness about steelhead in the Salish Sea!

Watch the race’s progress here.

Where's Sammy in the rankings?

Today Sammy is in a two-way tie for position 11. Yeah, that may not sound great, but he's competing against 47 other fish! He's 131 miles from the ocean, just over 20 miles behind the number one fish, Killer. We're rooting for you, Sammy!
STS Rankings May 7