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  • 1.
    Degerman, Erik
    et al.
    Swedish University of Agricultural sciences.
    Tamario, Carl
    Linnaeus University.
    Watz, Johan
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences (from 2013).
    Nilsson, Per Anders
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences (from 2013). Lund University.
    Calles, Olle
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences (from 2013).
    Occurrence and habitat use of European eel (Anguilla anguilla) in running waters: lessons for improved monitoring, habitat restoration and stocking2019In: Aquatic Ecology, ISSN 1386-2588, E-ISSN 1573-5125, Vol. 53, no 4, p. 639-650Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    To improve the management of the Europeaneel (Anguilla anguilla) in freshwater, it isessential to define important lotic habitats. Electrofishingdata from 289 wadeable, hard-bottom sites in 69Swedish coastal rivers and streams, originally surveyedfor salmonid monitoring, were used to evaluatethe effects of sampling- and habitat-related factors oneel occurrence. Probability of eel occurrence, asinfluenced by sampling procedure (sampled area,number of consecutive runs and ambient watertemperature) and habitat characteristics (size ofcatchment, dominating bottom substrate, shade, watervelocity, mean depth), was evaluated for small (totallength B 150 mm) and large ([150 mm) yelloweels. Data were analysed in a mixed presence/absencegeneralized linear model with dispersal (distance tomouth from sampled site), habitat and samplingrelatedvariables as covariates. The two modelsexplained variation in occurrence to 81.5% for smalleel and 76.2% for large eel. Probability of eeloccurrence decreased with distance from the rivermouth, and increased with sampled area, number ofruns, water temperature, coarser substrate and size ofriver. We suggest that future eel habitat restorationshould focus on lower reaches of larger rivers withsuitable coarse bottom habitats. Stocking of young eelshould be carried out in comparable accessible habitatsin the upper reaches where eel densities are low.The results also strongly indicate that eel may besampled together with young salmonids with DCelectrofishing in wadeable habitats.

  • 2.
    Watz, Johan
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences (from 2013). Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences, Department of Biology.
    Degerman, Erik
    Department of Aquatic Resources, Institute of Freshwater Research, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Orebro, Sweden.
    Tamario, Carl
    Department of Aquatic Resources, Institute of Freshwater Research, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, € Orebro, Sweden.
    Calles, Olle
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences (from 2013).
    Climbing the ladder: an evaluation of three different anguillid eel climbing substrata and placement of upstream passage solutions at migration barriers2019In: Animal Conservation, ISSN 1367-9430, E-ISSN 1469-1795, Vol. 22, no 5, p. 452-462Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Conservation programmes for endangered, long-lived and migratory species often have to target multiple life stages. The bottlenecks associated with the survival of juvenile anguillid eels migrating into inland waters, the survival and growth of the freshwater life stage, as well as the recruitment and survival of silver eels, migrating back to the ocean to spawn, must be resolved. In this study, we focus on the efficiency of passage solutions for upstream migrating juveniles. Such solutions can consist of inclined ramps lined with wetted climbing substrata. We evaluated different commonly used substrata in a controlled experiment, recorded eel behaviour at the entrance of the ramp with infrared videography and validated the experimental results at a hydropower dam, where we also investigated the effects of ramp placement on performance. In the experiment on eel substratum selection, 40 % of the eels passed in lanes with studded substratum, whereas only 21 and 5 % passed using open weave and bristle substrata, respectively. Video analysis revealed that the studded substratum attracted more approaches and initiated climbs than the other substrata, but once a climb had been initiated, passage success rates did not differ between substrata. Eels using the studded substratum climbed 26 % faster than those using the bristle substratum and almost four times as fast as those climbing in the open weave. The superior performance of the studded substratum was supported by data from the field validation. Moreover, ramps positioned by the bank with low water velocities caught the most eels, but proximity to the dam had no effect on performance. To strengthen the European eel population, more juveniles need to reach their freshwater feeding grounds. A critical step to achieve this increase is to equip upstream passage solutions with suitable substrata and to optimize ramp placement at migration obstacles.

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