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Landscape characteristics, land use, and coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) abundance, Snohomish River, Wash., U.S.A.

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Abstract:

We used temporally consistent patterns in the spatial distribution of returning adult coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) to explore relationships between salmon abundance, landscape characteristics, and land use patterns in the Snohomish River watershed, Wash. The proportion of total adult coho salmon abundance supported by a specific stream reach was consistent among years, even though interannual adult coho salmon abundance varied substantially. Wetland occurrence, local geology, stream gradient, and land use were significantly correlated with adult coho salmon abundance. Median adult coho salmon densities in forest-dominated areas were 1.5–3.5 times the densities in rural, urban, and agricultural areas. Relationships between these habitat characteristics and adult coho salmon abundance were consistent over time. Spatially explicit statistical models that included these habitat variables explained almost half of the variation in the annual distribution of adult coho salmon. Our analysis indicates that such models can be used to identify and prioritize freshwater areas for protection and restoration.

L'étude des patterns temporels stables dans la répartition spatiale des saumons coho (Oncorhynchus kisutch) qui retournent en rivière nous a permis d'examiner les relations entre l'abondance des saumons, les caractéristiques du paysage et l'utilisation des terres dans le bassin versant de la Snohomish. La proportion du nombre total de saumons adultes maintenue par chaque section de cours d'eau est constante d'une année à l'autre, bien que l'abondance des saumons adultes varie considérablement au cours des années. Il y a des corrélations significatives entre la présence de terres humides, la géologie locale, le gradient du cours d'eau et l'utilisation des terres, d'une part, et l'abondance des saumons coho adultes, d'autre part. Les densités médianes de saumons coho adultes dans les zones à prédominance de forêts sont de 1,5 à 3,5 fois plus élevées que dans les zones rurales, urbaines et agricoles. Les relations entre ces caractéristiques de l'habitat et l'abondance des saumons coho adultes sont constantes dans le temps. Des modèles statistiques spatiaux explicites qui incluent ces variables de l'habitat expliquent presque la moitié de la variation dans la répartition annuelle des saumons coho adultes. Notre analyse laisse croire que de tels modèles peuvent servir à identifier les sites d'eau douce nécessaires à la protection et à la restauration des saumons et à les placer par ordre d'importance.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2002

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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