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Sockeye Salmon Video Stock Footage
The sockeye salmon is sometimes called red or blueback salmon, due to its color. Sockeye are blue tinged with silver in color while living in the ocean. When they return to spawning grounds, their bodies become red and their heads turn green. Sockeye can be anywhere from 60 to 84 cm (2 ft 0 in–2 ft 9 in) in length and weigh from 2.3 to 7 kg (5–15 lb). Two distinguishing features are their long, serrated gill rakers that range from 30 to 40 in number, and their lack of a spot on their tail or back. In Japan, a landlocked variety termed black kokanee, or "kunimasu" in Japanese, was deemed to be extinct after 1940, when a hydroelectric project made its native lake in northern Akita Prefecture more acidic. The species seems to have been saved by transferring eggs to Saiko Lake, 500 kilometers to the south, however. This fish has been treated as a subspecies of sockeye Oncorhynchus nerka kawamurae, or even an independent species Oncorhynchus kawamurae.
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