Sediment infilling benefits rainbow trout passage in a baffled channel

Ecological Engineering
By: , and 



Fish are thought to exploit low velocity recirculation zones in the wakes of baffles to take refuge from challenging hydraulic conditions in baffled culverts. Here, we investigate how sediment deposition in the wakes of baffles affects passage and behaviors of juvenile rainbow trout in a baffled experimental flume. High temporal resolution 3D fish tracking provided detailed kinematics of adopted trajectories. Stereoscopic particle image velocimetry permitted a finely resolved description of the flow over a clear baffle configuration and the same configuration with sediment wedges placed in their wakes. Controlled station-holding, suggestive of flow-refuging, only occurred when sediment wedges were blocking the baffles’ recirculation region. Also, maximum distances of ascent were higher, and slower ground-speeds were employed in the sediment condition. The results of this study suggest the turbulent recirculatory wakes of the clear bed condition caused postural instabilities and were in many ways detrimental to passage performance. Additional research is required to understand the relationships existing between baffle height, hydrodynamic recirculatory wake metrics, sediment deposition and the behavioral responses of fish interacting with weir baffle wakes.

    Publication type Article
    Publication Subtype Journal Article
    Title Sediment infilling benefits rainbow trout passage in a baffled channel
    Series title Ecological Engineering
    DOI 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2018.10.003
    Volume 125
    Year Published 2018
    Language English
    Publisher Elsevier
    Contributing office(s) Leetown Science Center
    Description 12 p.
    First page 38
    Last page 49
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