Projects Directory

Monitoring returning Atlantic salmon population size in Miramichi River using imaging sonar 2018

Recipient: University of New Brunswick (Linnansaari)
Approved Amount: $25,000
Year Approved: 2018

The Atlantic salmon population in the Miramichi River has recently declined to unprecedentedly low levels. This decline has triggered management intervention that has imposed a complete restriction on recreational fishing harvest in the last three seasons. A mid-season review of Atlantic salmon returns has been contemplated as an option to determine whether restrictions in recreational harvest is required in future years. To be able to better assess the strength of salmon return in a given season, and especially in the mid-season, it is of extreme importance that the population can be assessed in an accurate and timely manner.

The proposed project will use Adaptive Resolution Imaging Sonar (ARIS) to count and measure the returning salmon in two monitoring sites in the Miramichi River. The project objective is to provide a daily in-season count and eventually, an estimate of the total spawning run of Atlantic salmon throughout the migrating season in the monitored tributaries. The counts include, for example, a large tributary (the Little Southwest Miramichi River) to the Northwest Miramichi, for which salmon population estimate had never been provided before the field season 2017 (the first field season for ARIS use).
Contact: Dr. Tommi Linnansaari, 506-458-7569,