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Thread: Smolt tracking

  1. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Westcountry View Post
    Is that smolts from the Tirry?
    I didn't know they were tagging Shin smolts, any info come from this tagging yet?


    Andy
    The smolts were from the Tirry and Fiag. We have just had some preliminary results from the tracking. The results show the area of losses and general ideas of the direction of travel once they hit the sea.Fuller results will be available soon, I believe.
    You do not need to have a PhD to be a bad salmon fisherman but it helps.

  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by keirstream View Post
    A few years ago during a late May week on the Lower Shin the lads showed us some of the smolts trapped and ferried downstream from the loch. These included quite a number of marked escapee smolts from the rearing cages on Griamhe. That of course, was not part of the plan. Has anything been done to ensure the integrity of these nets since then?
    Due to the curse of dewatering feeder burns by the hydro, there also has to be a smolt trap above the intake on the Gruidie. How many smolts are trapped there each season?
    Is there any evidence of farmed fish genetic contamination anywhere in the system?
    We report any fish we believe to be escapees to Marine Scotland. There have been lots of discussions about this topic as you can imagine! At the moment we engage with the farmers as part of our trap and truck operation so there is a dialogue between us. We regard the trapping at the Merkland end of the system as a combination of monitoring and mitigation. The Grudie trap was not installed because the Grudie Burn was dewatered below the falls but as mitigation for the loss of the Tirry fish that could not get out of Loch Shin. It used to typically produce about 2k smolts but it could be as high as 4K in some years. At the moment the trap is too badly damaged to be used. In terms of genetics, two pieces of work are being undertaken. One was commissioned by SSE and the fishery board/trust looking at smolts from the Tirry and Fiag. The results are only just in and it would be wrong of me to discuss them on a public forum just now albeit everything will be made publicly available when the time is right. We also collected samples from juveniles from a number of areas on the Shin system as part of Marine Scotland Science’s aquaculture interactions project. The project took samples from lots of places in the ‘aquaculture zone’ as they call it. We understand results will be available in the new year. If signs of introgression are found then obviously serious questions will have to be asked...
    You do not need to have a PhD to be a bad salmon fisherman but it helps.

  3. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kylesider View Post
    We report any fish we believe to be escapees to Marine Scotland. There have been lots of discussions about this topic as you can imagine! At the moment we engage with the farmers as part of our trap and truck operation so there is a dialogue between us. We regard the trapping at the Merkland end of the system as a combination of monitoring and mitigation. The Grudie trap was not installed because the Grudie Burn was dewatered below the falls but as mitigation for the loss of the Tirry fish that could not get out of Loch Shin. It used to typically produce about 2k smolts but it could be as high as 4K in some years. At the moment the trap is too badly damaged to be used. In terms of genetics, two pieces of work are being undertaken. One was commissioned by SSE and the fishery board/trust looking at smolts from the Tirry and Fiag. The results are only just in and it would be wrong of me to discuss them on a public forum just now albeit everything will be made publicly available when the time is right. We also collected samples from juveniles from a number of areas on the Shin system as part of Marine Scotland Science’s aquaculture interactions project. The project took samples from lots of places in the ‘aquaculture zone’ as they call it. We understand results will be available in the new year. If signs of introgression are found then obviously serious questions will have to be asked...
    Interesting, thanks.

    Was it not an MSS report on the genetics of Kyle rivers fish that pointed out there was significant introgression of farmed genes already, a fair few years ago now? (IIRC: I've a copy buried somewhere, but a hard one...)

    You know, the series of many Scots rivers (Dee etc.) where they were trying to shoehorn the genetics a little wanting to show lots of "integrity", and exposed a few shocks (straying rates, 80% assignment at most, and generally as good as flipping a coin, significant farmer introgression rates etc.)
    "...hooking mortality is higher than you'd expect: further evidence that as a numbers game, catch-and-release fishing isn't always as straightforward as it seems"
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  4. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by seeking View Post
    Interesting, thanks.

    Was it not an MSS report on the genetics of Kyle rivers fish that pointed out there was significant introgression of farmed genes already, a fair few years ago now? (IIRC: I've a copy buried somewhere, but a hard one...)

    You know, the series of many Scots rivers (Dee etc.) where they were trying to shoehorn the genetics a little wanting to show lots of "integrity", and exposed a few shocks (straying rates, 80% assignment at most, and generally as good as flipping a coin, significant farmer introgression rates etc.)
    I think that it is the FASMOP report that you are referring to which can be downloaded from the Kyle Fisheries website. Fish believed to be of direct farm origin were included in that work but the issue of introgression was not specifically looked at. Further work was published by Marine Scotland Science which looked at which of the operators had lost fish in a particular year. The full paper can be found at:

    Identification of the farm of origin of Atlantic salmon smolt escapees in a freshwater Scottish loch using single-nucleotide polymorphic markers | ICES Journal of Marine Science | Oxford Academic

    Introgression is now being looked at as per my previous post.
    You do not need to have a PhD to be a bad salmon fisherman but it helps.

  5. #75

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    A thought here about the loss of smolt at sea. we fit radio tags and track them as far as viable does anyone know if the tags are still transmitting when they reach their feeding grounds, the modern sea going trawlers are fitted with state of the art devices and i wonder if this would benefit them in their hunt.

  6. #76

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    Does anybody have a copy of the first edition of the glossy fund raising 'brochure' that launched the Lost tagged smolt project in the Moray Firth?

    It contained a large graph that suggested that Atlantic salmon numbers would begin to increase very soon.

    Can anybody confirm the date when this was likely to happen..?
    Last edited by Deepwading; 07-12-2019 at 10:28 AM.

  7. #77

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    Was talking to a fisherman tonight regarding all the effort that is going into the smolt tracking projects on various rivers . He summed it up perfectly i thought as he said what the scientists are doing is equivalent to to walking in to a garage and informing them that your car is not running properly but telling the garage to ignore the fact the exhaust is missing and also to ignore the fact that all the filters are clogged up and the timing belt is made from an old bike tube and that you want the garage to focus on the Turbo only as this is where you feel you have the problem.

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deepwading View Post
    Does anybody have a copy of the first edition of the glossy fund raising 'brochure' that launched the Lost tagged smolt project in the Moray Firth?

    It contained a large graph that suggested that Atlantic salmon numbers would begin to increase very soon.

    Can anybody confirm the date when this was likely to happen..?
    I was at a meeting with the Atlantic salmon trust last week, they never lead us to believe that numbers were on the turn if fact it is the exact opposite. It was a really interesting meeting telling us the results of the smolt tracking project. As others have probably said here, there are a large amount of smolts that don't even make it to the sea, this is a worry but perhaps it always has been that way, we don't know as there is no data from previous years. The one message was that there are so many things that can effect salmon survival, like habitat, solution predation etc so we need to be careful we don't jump to conclusions too quickly although we are running out of time.
    Last edited by bankwheel; 09-12-2019 at 07:55 AM.

  9. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by bankwheel View Post
    I was at a meeting with the Atlantic salmon trust last week, they never lead us to believe that numbers were on the turn if fact it is the exact opposite. It was a really interesting meeting telling us the results of the smolt tracking project. As others have probably said here, there are a large amount of smolts that don't even make it to the sea, this is a worry but perhaps it always has been that way, we don't know as there is no data from previous years. The one message was that there are so many things that can effect salmon survival, like habitat, solution predation etc so we need to be careful we don't jump to conclusions too quickly although we are running out of time.
    Where was the meeting held?

  10. #80

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    Interesting. I must have imagined sitting in at least two northern fishing huts during the summer of 2018 holding a hard copy and discussing the predicted upturn in salmon numbers as suggested by a full-page graph in the first version of the document.

    The second version (rather more widely available) contains a very different graph, suggesting a continuing decline.

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