Tracking salmon and sea trout use of and mortality in transitional and coastal waters

Knowledge of salmonids’ use of transitional and coastal waters (TCW) is scarce. SAMARCH will use acoustic technology and tags recording environmental parameters to track salmon and sea trout use of and mortality in TCW. This tracking data will significantly improve the knowledgebase used by regulating authorities when managing activities in TCW in order to reduce risk to migratory salmonids.

The project will use the very small Vemco v5 Acosutic tags in smolts:

The project will use the very small Vemco v5 Acosutic tags in smolts

5 key activities in this work-package and how each will help the management of salmonids:

Activity 1 – Establish tracking networks

We will determine the optimal location of acoustic receivers in four estuaries (UK: Tamar & Frome; FR: Bresle & Scorff) in order to collect information on salmon and sea trout use of transitional and coastal waters.

Activity 2 – Juvenile salmonid use of transitional waters

We will use acoustic tracking of salmon and sea trout smolts to provide information on timing and duration of the presence of juvenile salmonids in key transitional and coastal zones during their seaward migration.

Activity 3 – Juvenile loss rate

We will establish the loss rate of juvenile salmon and sea trout in key transitional and coastal zones in four estuaries of contrasting caracter and length.

Activity 4 – Adult sea trout at sea

We will use a combination of acoustic and data storage tags to provide information on adult sea trout spatio-temporal use of the transitional and coastal waters and to model the most likely path of individuals while at sea.

Activity 5 – Integrate the new knowledge

We will collate and synthetise the new knowledge from the tracking work to improve management of salmonids in coastal waters while getting buy in from stakeholders.

The Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust gratefully acknowledge the financial support received from the Atlantic Salmon Trust for the fish tracking element of SAMARCH