Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis Mitchell) movement, habitat use, and potential impacts of forest harvesting activity in the Copper Lake Watershed, Corner Brook, Newfoundland

McCarthy, James H. (1997) Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis Mitchell) movement, habitat use, and potential impacts of forest harvesting activity in the Copper Lake Watershed, Corner Brook, Newfoundland. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

Seasonal movements of brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis Mitchell) within a treatment and control stream in a forested area near Corner Brook, Newfoundland were determined using counting fences and tagging. Trout movement was weakly or uncorrelated with habitat parameters. Most trout moved in association with increased discharge associated with storm events. Two patterns in upstream movement were observed: 1) an apparent 'preferred' velocity range of 0.395-0.462 m˙s⁻¹ in the treatment and 0.206-0.409 m˙s⁻¹ in the control stream; and 2) an increase in upstream movement after the storm peak if the peak was greater than 0.474 and 0.421 m˙s⁻¹ in the treatment and control stream, respectively. Downstream movement in the treatment stream occurred most at lower velocity ranges and trout moved more before and after storm peaks than during the peak. Downstream movement in the control stream occurred at all velocity ranges and trout moved throughout the storms. -- Increased movement out of the treatment stream was recorded in 1995 after a limited forest harvest of approximately 9.0% of the drainage basin (20% of the stream-length). Trout from the treatment stream did not appear to change their distance of migration but moved out of the treatment stream and into Copper Lake. This increase appeared to have been due to subtle changes in stream habitat. -- Discharge, maximum stream temperature, mean stream depth, velocity, and temperature were not altered by forest harvesting and dissolved oxygen did not reach critical levels even after the cut. The minimum daily water temperature was affected by harvesting with a significantly higher number of days with minimum temperatures less than 11°C. In addition, total suspended sediment appeared to have been increased, however, statistical evidence is lacking. -- Radio telemetry of mature trout in the lakes of the study area showed that lacustrine spawning represents a large proportion of the reproduction in certain areas of the watershed. This has rarely been documented in Newfoundland and needs to be considered in the context of effects from forest harvesting practices.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/4131
Item ID: 4131
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 130-148.
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Biology
Date: 1997
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Watershed; Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Corner Brook
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Brook trout--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Watershed; Logging--Environmental aspects--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Watershed

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