By Eliana Dockterman
September 4, 2014

Dammed if they do, dammed if they don’t. Humans have made it awfully hard for salmon to migrate by building dams in their paths. As penance, people have spent years carrying salmon by hand, by truck and even by airplane upstream. But now we’re trying a new, more efficient means of transportation: the cannon.

A company called Whooshh Innovations (yes, that’s their real name) has invented the Salmon Cannon (yes, that’s it’s real name). Despite its ominous moniker, the device actually carries the fish very gently to their destination: A tube is used to suck up fish from the water and slide them a 22 miles per hour to their destination, where they return to the water unscathed. This weekend, the device will be employed at the Columbia River in Washington.

Whooshh Innovations also invented a vacuum to harvest and transport fruits without bruising them, which basically makes the inventors at this company the Martha Stewarts of animal conservation.

Sounds great for the fruit, but imagine bing a fish suddenly sucked up into a tube: that would be terrifying! Could be a plot point in Finding Dory. You’re welcome, Pixar.

Write to Eliana Dockterman at eliana.dockterman@time.com.

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