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Local Marines lend a hand at SK hatchery

Local Marines helped te Port Orchard Rotary at the SK salmon hatchery. - Courtesy Photo
Local Marines helped te Port Orchard Rotary at the SK salmon hatchery.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo

Next week, Port Orchard Rotarian Brian Sauer plans to pick up a delivery of about 15,000 eyeballs.

“They’re called ‘eyeballed eggs,’ ” Sauer said, explaining that eggs are from salmon and having an eye in each means they have been fertilized. “They also have a tough outer layer, like a rubber ball.”

After he picks up the eggs, Sauer said he will bring them back to a small hatchery up Karcher Road in East Port Orchard.

“The eggs are provided free by the State of Washington,” he said, adding that the rotary club then raises the fish and releases them in the hopes of replenishing an maintaining the local population.

Sauer said he will put the eggs into incubation trays until they grow into baby salmon, or frys. Once old enough, the fish are released into Blackjack Creek.

“It’s a service to the community,” said Sauer, who took over the hatchery project about five years ago. “Hopefully, the fish will eventually come back.”

About a month ago, Sauer and the hatchery received some welcome help from a group of U.S. Marines looking for a local service project.

“So I bought a load of rocks, which they unloaded and used to improve the road,” he said. “They also dug out a bunch of silt and sand for me. They did a lot of work ‚Äî it was a big help.”

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