Turbulence investigation and reproduction for assisting downstream migrating juvenile salmonids, Part II of II: Effects of induced turbulence on behavior of juvenile salmon, 2001-2005 final report

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Abstract

Passage through dams is a major source of mortality of anadromous juvenile salmonids because some populations must negotiate up to eight dams in Columbia and Snake rivers. Dams cause direct mortality when fish pass through turbines, but dams may also cause indirect mortality by altering migration conditions in rivers. Forebays immediately upstream of dams have decreased the water velocity of rivers and may contribute substantially to the total migration delay of juvenile salmonids. Recently, Coutant (2001a) suggested that in addition to low water velocities, lack of natural turbulence may contribute to migration delay by causing fish to lose directional cues. Coutant (2001a) further hypothesized that restoring turbulence in dam forebays may reduce migration delay by providing directional cues that allow fish to find passage routes more quickly (Coutant 2001a). Although field experiments have yielded proof of the concept of using induced turbulence to guide fish to safe passage routes, little is known about mechanisms actually causing behavioral changes. To test hypotheses about how turbulence influences movement and behavior of migrating juvenile salmonids, we conducted two types of controlled experiments at Cowlitz Falls Dam, Washington. A common measure of migration delay is the elapsed time between arrival at, and passage through, a dam. Therefore, for the first set of experiments, we tested the effect of induced turbulence on the elapsed time needed for fish to traverse through a raceway and pass over a weir at its downstream end (time trial experiment). If turbulence helps guide fish to passage routes, then fish should pass through the raceway quicker in the presence of appropriately scaled and directed turbulent cues. Second, little is known about how the physical properties of water movement provide directional cues to migrating juvenile salmonids. To examine the feasibility of guiding fish with turbulence, we tested whether directed turbulence could guide fish into one of two channels in the raceway, and subsequently cause them to pass disproportionately over the weir where turbulent cues were aimed (guidance experiment). Last, we measured and mapped water velocity and turbulence during the experiments to understand water movement patterns and the spatial distribution of turbulence in the raceways.

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype Other Government Series
Title Turbulence investigation and reproduction for assisting downstream migrating juvenile salmonids, Part II of II: Effects of induced turbulence on behavior of juvenile salmon, 2001-2005 final report
DOI 10.2172/901270
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher Bonneville Power Administration
Contributing office(s) Western Fisheries Research Center
Description 61 p.