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Quantifying component mortality rates of juvenile salmonids

T. Reid Nelson, Assistant Professor, Environmental Science and Policy; Faculty Fellow, Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center (PEREC); is quantifying component mortality rates of juvenile salmonids.

Outmigrant survival of endangered California salmonids is low and is likely a result of poor water quality and predation, but the component mortality rates from these sources remain unknown. In this study, we will quantify outmigrant mortality of endangered Steelhead and partition this mortality into predation (e.g. piscine, mammal, and bird) and other mortality (e.g. poor water quality) to elucidate the main sources of outmigrant loss. This information will aid in conservation of endangered Steelhead and will be applicable to other endangered salmonids in the region.

For this project, Nelson will oversee project management and data analysis of an acoustic telemetry study determining component mortality rates of endangered salmonids.

Nelson received $48,335 from the University of California, Santa Cruz for this study, as a subcontract for the overall proposal ($565,268) funded by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Funding began in October 2022 and will end in late September 2024.