Our understanding of biological criteria to inform fish passagedesign is limited, partially due to the lack of understanding ofbiological motivators, cues, and constraints, as well as a lackof biological performance evaluations of structures once theyare built. The Vianney-Legendre vertical slot fishway on theRichelieu River, Quebec, Canada, passes large numbers of migratingredhorse (Moxostoma spp.) upriver to spawninggrounds each year. We evaluated the physiological capacity andrelative swimming ability of three redhorse species (Moxostomaanisurum, Moxostoma carinatum, Moxostoma macrolepidotum;silver, river, and shorthead redhorse, respectively) to determinehow these biotic factors relate to variation in fishway passagesuccess and duration. Shorthead redhorse had higher maximummetabolic rates and were faster swimmers than silver and riverredhorse at their species-specific peak migration temperatures.Blood lactate and glucose concentrations recovered morequickly for river redhorse than for silver and short head red horse, and river redhorse placed second in terms of metabolicrecovery and swim speed. Interestingly, fish sampled from thetop of the fishway had nearly identical lactate, glucose, and pHvalues compared to control fish. Using passive integrated transpondersin 2010 and 2012, we observed that passage successand duration were highly variable among redhorse species andwere not consistent among years, suggesting that other factorssuch as water temperature and river flows may modulate passagesuccess. Clearly, additional research is needed to understandhow organismal performance, environmental conditions,and other factors (including abundance of conspecifics andother comigrants) interact with fishway features to dictatewhich fish will be successful and to inform research of futurefishways. Our research suggests that there may be an opportunityfor a rapid assessment approach where fish chased toexhaustion to determine maximal values of physiological disturbanceare compared to fish sampled from the top of thefishway, which could reveal which species (or sizes of fish) areapproaching or exceeding their physiological capacity duringpassage.
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||Physiological and Biochemical Zoology|
|Publication status||Published - Feb 2014|
Hatry, C., Thiem, J., Binder, T. R., Hatin, D., Dumont, P., Stamplecoskie, K. M., Molina, J., Smokorowski, K. E., & Cooke, S. J. (2014). Comparative physiology and relative swimming performance of three Redhorse ( Moxostoma spp.) species: Associations with fishway passage success. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 87(1), 148-159.