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The influence of spawning habitat restoration on juvenile brown trout (Salmo trutta) density

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Abstract:

Between 1992 and 2003, we assessed the density of age-0+ brown trout (Salmo trutta) in a channelized stream in northern Sweden, which was restored using two different schemes. One section of the stream was restored by the addition of boulders and reconstruction of gravel beds (boulder + gravel section), whereas another section was restored through addition of boulders only (boulder-only section). In addition, we compared the substrate size composition of gravel beds and the egg-to-fry survival between the two stream sections, and we related the density of age-0+ brown trout to the area of reconstructed gravel beds. After the restoration, the density of age-0+ brown trout increased significantly in the boulder + gravel section and was positively correlated with the area of reconstructed gravel beds. By contrast, the density of age-0+ brown trout did not change in the boulder-only treatment. Egg-to-fry survival was significantly higher in the boulder + gravel section compared with the boulder-only section, probably because of the higher content of sand and fines in the gravel beds of the latter treatment. This study shows that the density of age-0+ brown trout was limited by the availability and quality of spawning substrate rather than by the structural habitat complexity.

De 1992 à 2003, nous avons évalué la densité des truites brunes (Salmo trutta) d'âge 0+ dans un cours d'eau canalisé du nord de la Suède, qui a été restauré selon deux arrangements différents. Une section a été restaurée par l'addition de blocs de pierre et la reconstruction des lits de gravier (section blocs + gravier), alors qu'une autre section n'a reçu que des blocs (section blocs seuls). De plus, nous avons comparé la composition en taille du substrat dans les lits de gravier et la survie de l'oeuf à l'alevin dans les deux sections de cours d'eau; nous avons mis en relation la densité des truites brunes d'âge 0+ à la surface des lits de gravier reconstruits. Après la restauration, la densité des truites brunes d'âge 0+ a augmenté significativement dans la section blocs + gravier où elle est en corrélation positive avec la surface des lits de gravier reconstitués. Au contraire, la densité des truites d'âge 0+ n'a pas changé dans la section ayant reçu les blocs seuls. La survie de l'oeuf à l'alevin est significativement plus importante dans la section blocs + gravier que dans la section blocs seuls, probablement à cause du contenu plus grand de sable de de sédiments fins dans les lits de gravier de cette dernière section. Notre étude montre que la densité des truites d'âge 0+ est limitée par la disponibilité et la qualité des substrats de fraie plutôt que par la complexité structurale de l'habitat.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2007

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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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