This year’s salmon return is estimated to be one of the largest in the past two decades. The Alaskan Department of Fish Game reports 58 million sockeye salmon returned to Alaskan lakes to spawn in 2015. Approximately 35.7 million were harvested by commercial fishing crews.
Watch aerial footage from above Lake Iliamna following the crew of the Alaska Salmon Program as they conduct sockeye salmon surveys.
Bristol Bay is the largest sockeye salmon fishery on the planet and supplies 40 percent of all wild-caught fish in the U.S. Researcher Jason Ching captured the footage using an unmanned drone. You can find more of his work here.