Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Fantastic Voyage: Tracking Young Salmon's Perilous Migration

Life isn't easy for a young salmon.

After being born in fresh water, the fledgling fish travels hundreds of miles to the ocean, often carried by currents tail-first, where it encounters deep, predator-infested waters with strong currents and competition from its fellow fish brethren. The young fish must survive the gantlet of these first few weeks if it has any hope of making it to adulthood.

A new study of salmon migration in the Pacific Northwest shows that factors such as the ocean temperature, food availability and number of predators have a profound effect on the fish as they first enter the sea. The findings, detailed recently in the journal Animal Biotelemetry, could guide policies aimed at restoring endangered salmon species in the Pacific Northwest.

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