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SFS Annual Meeting

Poster Details

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Management of stream fish populations focuses on the role of physical habitat heterogeneity in regulating individual and population growth, an approach that assumes food is not limiting or unimportant. This assumption is rarely tested or evaluated despite decades of research showing the fundamental role food plays in regulating individual growth and the carrying capacity of a stream to support fish. Food limitation may be particularly important in forest streams where light and nutrients constrain primary and secondary productivity. Here we examine the linkages between riparian forest structure (e.g. dense 2nd growth stands vs. open old-growth stands), prey availability, and stream salmonid populations during summer low-flow conditions using a combination of experiments and field observations. Multiple lines of evidence support the hypothesis if water temperature is conducive to positive growth, fish populations in Pacific Northwest forest streams are limited by food availability during summer low flows, which is partly determined by riparian forest structure and local habitat conditions.

Peter Kiffney (Primary Presenter/Author), Northwest Fisheries Science Center,;

Matthew Kaylor ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oregon State University,;

Dana Warren ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oregon State University,;

Sean Naman ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of British Columbia ,;