Acoustic Tracking of Fish Movements in the Minas Passage and FORCE Demonstration Area: Pre-Turbine Baseline Studies (2011-2013)

To address the potential risk of environmental effects on fish that utilize the FORCE test area as a migratory route and for other movements (e.g. foraging), a multi-year tracking study was conducted to assess the movements of four species of concern - Atlantic sturgeon (regionally threatened), Atlantic salmon (smolts; endangered inner Bay of Fundy population), American eel (silver stage; threatened) and striped bass (endangered Bay of Fundy population).  They display broad characteristics of movement and depth preferences, and may provide insight on potential impacts on species with similar natural history characteristics. 

The main objectives of the study were to:

1. Determine temporal (seasonal, diel) movements of tagged fishes within the Minas Passage and FORCE test area;

2. Identify broad distribution patterns in the Minas Passage (north to south, east to west);

3. Determine depth preferences and movements in relation to tidal stage (ebb/flood) and current speed;

4. Estimate maximum travel speeds through Minas Passage; and

5. Assess potential risks of fish-turbine interactions at the FORCE site. 

Lead Principal Investigators: Dr Anna Redden & Dr. Michael Stokesbury of Acadia University 

This reource is also available as Appendix 4 in the 2011-2013 Environmental Effects Monitoring Program report.