Projects

Effects of striped bass predation on Atlantic salmon smolts in the Miramichi River using new predation technology

Recipient: University of New Brunswick (Linnansaari & Helminen)
Approved Amount: $14,000 for 2020 (1st year of a 2-year project, total: $28,000)

Year 2019 marks the lowest return of Atlantic salmon ever recorded for the Miramichi River. The striped bass population in the river has recovered to healthy population levels. There is currently a limited understanding if human-altered predator-prey relationships are immediate threats to salmon.  This Project will use new 69 kHz acoustic “predation tags” to tag pre-smolt A. salmon and follow their migration through the Miramichi estuary in two consecutive spring seasons (2020 and 2021) when striped bass enter the river to spawn.

The pre-smolts will be tagged in the previous autumn allowing them to exhibit natural behaviour and migration timing before their smolt migration. Intensive active (CRI/UNB and the Anqotum) and passive (the ASF and the OTN) tracking will be utilized in spring. Predation tags produce explicit signal of predation occurrences, and a combination of receiver lines and active tracking will pinpoint the specific location of any predation events.

Contact: Dr. Tommi Linnansaari, 506-458-7569, tommi.linnansaari@unb.ca