To The Journey’s End – a new film about the lifecycle of Atlantic Salmon

May 1, 2017 by No Comments | Category Aquaculture, Marine Directorate Science

To the jouney's end posterWe’re delighted to announce that at our Freshwater Fisheries open day in Pitlochry on 13th May that we will be showing a new feature from filmmaker Bernard Martin.

Concluding a 7-year, self-funded project, supported by the Boards and Trusts of the rivers of the North East of Scotland, Aberdeenshire-based filmmaker Bernard Martin created this film as an educational resource, hoping to inspire local students to think about the conservation of the species.

To The Journey’s End documents the desperate voyage of the Atlantic salmon from ocean to river and back again, driven by the desire to reproduce. Locally-filmed, purpose-shot footage follows them as they travel through the seasons until they finally make it to the spawning grounds where they themselves hatched many years earlier – they finally reach the end of their exhausting 3,000-mile journey. Having not fed since they entered the river from the sea almost a year previous, for most, this is the end of their lives. After spawning, viewers witness the hatching of eggs the following spring and watch the development of baby salmon until they return to the sea as smolts years later.

The film features rarely-seen footage from North East Scotland, allowing viewers to follow the fascinating life-cycle of the Atlantic salmon, fraught with danger. What’s more, the viewer will come to appreciate how endangered Atlantic salmon really are, and the challenges they face throughout their struggle for survival in the modern world.

By painting a poignant picture of the arduous journey of the Atlantic salmon, this film, perhaps most importantly, will inspire determination to help save this magnificent species; a native and natural symbol of Scotland.

On the upcoming launch of his film, Bernard said: “Year after year we were disappointed not to film the spawning sequence, heavy rains, lack of fish, being in the wrong place at the right time and equipment failing at the critical moment, all meant another year’s filming. Without the spawning sequence there was no film at all. What was really uplifting was that the people who work and look after our rivers never gave up on me. The quality of the rivers of the North East is down to their hard work and management”

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