Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Salmon Found – Ocean Tracking Network Breakthrough

20.08.2008
For years scientists have struggled to understand the decline of Atlantic salmon and what happens to them once they reach the ocean. The Ocean Tracking Network, headquartered at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, has made a breakthrough discovery, learning where they go.

Atlantic salmon tagged with tiny acoustic transmitters crossed the 22 km line of acoustic receivers, deployed by the Ocean Tracking Network (OTN), in the waters off of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The fish, tagged by The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) in the Penobscot River in Maine, sent signals to the receivers, and information about their passage was then downloaded from the receivers to a Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) research vessel via modem.

“In Maine, traditional methods of restoring Atlantic salmon by stocking fish have not been very successful, with only 0.68 per cent returning,” says Mike Stokesbury, director of research for OTN, headquartered at Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia. “With the tagged salmon we can track more fish further into the ocean than ever before and get meaningful results,” he explains.

One hundred salmon were tagged in Maine USA with 9mm transmitters in the Penobscot River. About 30 per cent of their signals were picked up by OTN receivers deployed by DFO off Halifax. Each fish has an individual code and gives specific information about its activity such as survival rates, speed and migratory habits. The information has shown that while some salmon may die before reaching Halifax, many still survive.

The first downloads gave valuable information about when the salmon left the Penobscot River and estuaries. “We’re not sure where they go in-between, but we’re hoping to find that out,” says Mr. Stokesbury. “The salmon crossing the line is evidence that the network is working,” adds Peter Smith, a scientist at the Bedford Institute of Oceanography (BIO) and the DFO lead for the Halifax Line. Some tagged salmon may have not yet crossed the line while others may have gone beyond it, but they may be detected again when they cross the Atlantic Salmon Federation (ASF) line at Strait of Belle Isle, Labrador.

“Given the fact that we are looking for a fish that is still less than a foot long that could be anywhere in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean, finding them in such apparent concentrations hundreds of miles from Brewer, Maine is remarkable and very encouraging,” said John Kocik, who is leading the salmon tagging project with colleague James Hawkes at the NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Centre’s Maine Field Station in Orono, Maine. “Broad-scale ocean arrays such as the OTN Halifax Line are a great tool to examine the marine ecology of such an uncommon fish in a large marine environment.”

Institutions and organizations such as BIO, DFO, USGS, ASF, NOAA and Dalhousie University are all part of the OTN effort to determine what’s happening to the salmon stocks. The first detection on the Halifax Line was recorded May 18 from a salmon tagged in Nova Scotia’s Medway River by a Fisheries and Oceans Canada researcher at BIO. The Halifax line also recorded a salmon tagged by ASF researchers in the spring in the Magaguadavic River, a Canadian river near the Maine-New Brunswick border. This fish crossed the Bay of Fundy and passed Halifax, presumably on the way to feed off the coast of Greenland.

“Salmon are an iconic fish, but they’re becoming endangered and people want to know what’s happening to the population,” says Mr. Stokesbury. “This is the first step to finding out where in the ocean the salmon are dying and what’s causing the decline.”

Similar results are being seen by the OTN’s West Coast partner in the Pacific Ocean Shelf Tracking (POST) project, of the Census of Marine Life. In addition to salmon, OTN researchers around the world and as far away as Australia are tagging marine life, from squid to turtles, with transmitters in an effort to finally provide ocean scientists around the world with the most comprehensive information about our oceans and marine life. Information about the OTN can be found at oceantrackingnetwork.org.

Billy Comeau | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.dal.ca
http://www.oceantrackingnetwork.org
http://www.bio.gc.ca/Welcome-e.html

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Preservation of floodplains is flood protection
27.09.2017 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Conservationists are sounding the alarm: parrots much more threatened than assumed
15.09.2017 | Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>