Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Formula For Predicting Climate Change Impact On Salmon Stocks Established

Date:
November 21, 2008
Source:
University of British Columbia
Summary:
Scientists have found a way to accurately predict the impact of climate change on imperiled Pacific salmon stocks that could result in better management strategies.

University of British Columbia researchers have found a way to accurately predict the impact of climate change on imperiled Pacific salmon stocks that could result in better management strategies.

Related Articles


The findings, among the first to quantify a relationship between river temperature and salmon mortality rate, are published in the current issue of the journal Physiological and Biochemical Zoology.

While climate change and rising river temperatures have been linked to dwindling salmon stocks, other factors have made it difficult to measure the exact impact – these including diseases, fisheries and man-made structures such as dams and fish ladders.

"Calculating the affect of climate change on animal fitness has been particularly challenging for scientists," says lead author Tony Farrell, who is jointly appointed in the Dept. of Zoology and the Faculty of Land and Food Systems.

"Animals have a thermal window, or high and low temperatures between which they are at their best for aerobic activities. Our study has shown that high temperatures push certain sockeye salmon stocks beyond their thermal window, resulting in cardiovascular failure and death," says Farrell.

Led by Farrell and Prof. Scott Hinch in the Dept. of Forest Sciences and the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, the UBC team has been studying Pacific salmon using biotelemetry trackers for a decade. They have identified the optimal thermal windows for several species of Pacific salmon, which coincide with the historic temperatures the fish would have encountered while migrating in the river.

In 2004, unusually warm river temperatures and earlier entry into the Fraser River system contributed to the "disappearance" of 70 per cent of the Weaver Creek sockeye stock.

"We analyzed river temperature data and the sockeye's migration dates and found that almost half of the population likely experienced temperatures that would cause a complete collapse of aerobic scope," says Farrell.

"In contrast, the Gates Creek sockeye stock, which have a higher thermal window, experienced few problems with the same high river temperatures that year."

In further investigations, the UBC team captured and placed individual fish in holding tanks of varying temperatures to simulate traversing different river temperatures before releasing them simultaneously back to the migratory run. Fish released from a high holding temperature were half as successful as those from colder environments at reaching their spawning grounds.

In a separate study, fish were intercepted during migration and implanted with biotelemetry trackers. None of the tracked salmon survived after release at river temperatures above the thermal window (at 19.5 degrees Celsius). Fish released at a cooler river temperature – one within the thermal window – later in the summer had much greater survival rates.

"This study shows that an increase over the past 50 years of 1.8 degrees Celsius in the Fraser River's peak summer temperatures is too much too fast for some salmon stocks," says Farrell.

"It also shows that climate change affects even the same species differently because individual populations may have adapted to their respective environments. As a result, we must develop strategies based on population – or even watershed – to predict, manage and conserve stocks."

Farrell adds that the same concepts may be applied beyond salmon management as another recent study co-authored by Farrell and published in the journal Science has revealed similar findings for fish and squid from the Atlantic Ocean.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of British Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of British Columbia. "Formula For Predicting Climate Change Impact On Salmon Stocks Established." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112124416.htm>.
University of British Columbia. (2008, November 21). Formula For Predicting Climate Change Impact On Salmon Stocks Established. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112124416.htm
University of British Columbia. "Formula For Predicting Climate Change Impact On Salmon Stocks Established." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112124416.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Anglerfish Rarely Seen In Its Habitat Will Haunt You

Anglerfish Rarely Seen In Its Habitat Will Haunt You

Newsy (Nov. 22, 2014) For the first time Monterey Bay Aquarium recorded a video of the elusive, creepy and rarely seen anglerfish. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Around the World Take Flight

Birds Around the World Take Flight

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Nov. 22, 2014) An imperial eagle equipped with a camera spreads its wings over London. It's just one of the many birds making headlines in this week's "animal roundup". Jillian Kitchener reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Baby Okapi Born at Houston Zoo

Raw: Baby Okapi Born at Houston Zoo

AP (Nov. 20, 2014) The Houston Zoo released video of a male baby okapi. Okapis, also known as the "forest giraffe", are native to the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Central Africa. Video is mute from source. (Nov. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins