From rapid field assessments to multi-year fisheries projects
FISHBIO studies the key role fish populations play in supporting ecosystem processes using both targeted and long-term research studies. Our work includes fish life-history and limiting factor analyses, predator-prey interactions and aquatic food web studies, and monitoring fisheries harvest and management trends.
Fish Life-History Studies
We conduct mark-recapture and fish aging studies to investigate fish movement patterns, timing, and growth rates throughout their life cycles. This information paired with an investigation of environmental conditions, such as food, temperature, and food availability, can help identify factors that contribute to anadromy vs. residency in fish such as steelhead/rainbow trout.
Trophic Dynamics and Predation
We conduct studies of abundance, survival, and diet to investigate the dynamics between native salmonid species and non-native predatory fishes. These studies incorporate a variety of techniques including PIT tagging and external tagging for mark and recapture, boat electrofishing, fyke traps, and ARIS surveys.
Fish Movement and Behavior
We use various tagging and tracking techniques as well as imaging technology to evaluate fish movement, behavior, and survival. Such studies can be used to investigate migration patterns as well as evaluate fish passage and entrainment at structures.
Laboratory studies include investigating fish stomach contents to determine diet composition and analyzing fish hard structures, such as otoliths (ear bones) and scales, to determine fish ages. Ageing fish helps us evaluate the age composition of fish populations and analyze differences in growth between populations, or in response to varying environmental conditions. Our 20-tank fish lab allows us to conduct controlled studies of environmental factors (including temperature, water chemistry, water velocity, and dissolved oxygen) and test prototypes of fisheries tags and camera technologies.