Journal Article

Silver eel mortality during downstream migration in the River Meuse, from a population perspective

Hendrik V. Winter, Henrice M. Jansen and André W. Breukelaar

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 64, issue 7, pages 1444-1449
Published in print October 2007 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online August 2007 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsm128
Silver eel mortality during downstream migration in the River Meuse, from a population perspective

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Winter, H. V., Jansen, H. M., and Breukelaar, A. W. 2007. Silver eel mortality during downstream migration in the River Meuse, from a population perspective. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, 64: 1444–1449.

The European eel (Anguilla anguilla) population has decreased sharply over the past few decades owing to a combination of many factors. To determine the impact of hydropower and fisheries during the downstream migration of silver eel in the River Meuse, telemetry experiments were performed during the years 2002–2006, using 18 detection stations (NedapTrail-System®) in the river and two at the entrance to the hydropower turbines. Recaptures in fisheries were used to assess fisheries mortality. In all, 300 silver eels were surgically implanted with Nedap-transponders. For each stretch between subsequent stations, mortality rates were assessed and related to the different factors. However, to determine the overall effect on the escapement of silver eels from the River Meuse, insight into the distribution of silver eels in the entire catchment of the River Meuse is required. At two locations, mark-recapture experiments in 2002 revealed that the estimated number of migrating silver eels increased strongly in a downstream direction, suggesting that a large proportion of silver eels start their migration from the downstream stretches and tributaries of the River Meuse. Approaches and monitoring requirements that can be used to determine the impact on silver eel populations in a river basin are discussed.

Keywords: fisheries; hydropower; migration; mortality; silver eel; telemetry

Journal Article.  4197 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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