The crossroads between Asia and the Arctic.
The expansive, pristine forests of the Khabarovsk region are an ecological crossroads where one can find temperate Asiatic species such as Siberian tigers, Himalayan bears, and giant Blakiston’s fish owls, along with northern Arctic species like moose and the Steller’s sea eagle. The species all mix in one of the North Pacific’s largest remaining expanses of unfragmented forest that includes coniferous, broadleaf, oak, birch, and spruce. The rivers of the Khabarovsk region flow from the headwaters of the Amur east into the Sea of Okhotsk and host a rich assemblage of salmon, char and taimen species.
Although Khabarovsk is relatively remote, salmon there are still exposed to threats from human activities. Legal and illegal timber harvest, catastrophic forest fires, and gold mining, all contribute to damaging salmon habitat. Illegal hunting and fishing are considered the strongest threats to the watershed. Creation of protected areas and efforts to reduce poaching are important strategies for preserving this rich salmon watershed.
Wild Salmon Center has worked on salmon conservation in the Russian Far East since the late 1990s. Together with Russian partners, Khabarovsk Wildlife Foundation, we have conducted assessments of the diversity of species, habitat quality, and conservation potential of eleven priority rivers in the Khabarovsk region and surrounding areas. WSC supports grassroots outreach by local community organizations, which share the vision for healthy salmon rivers across the North Pacific.
With our partners we have helped create a number of wild salmon protected areas in the Khabarovsk region over the past several decades on the Koppi River, Tugur River, Nimelen River, Maia River, and the rivers of the Shantar Islands.