Tending the Wild: Keeping the River

Salmon once swam in every major river in California and they provided and continue to provide an invaluable resource for Native peoples. In some areas like the Klamath River Basin, salmon are at the center of the world and integral to the environmental and cultural survival of the Yurok, Karuk, and Hupa peoples. But modernization forever altered watersheds across the state by concretizing rivers, siphoning water for agricultural production, and building dams to facilitate hydroelectric power. The effects on fish populations have been devastating and many Native groups have protested against these threats to their way of life. In this video, we explore how the Yurok, Karuk, and Hupa peoples have maintained their close relationship with salmon, how they have fought civil rights battles to secure tribal fishing rights, and how they have mobilized against the environmental degradation of the Klamath and Trinity Rivers resulting from dams, large scale agriculture, and the marijuana industry.

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