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Seasonal distribution and size of juvenile pink salmon in the Gulf of Alaska: relating ocean habitat use to growth and survival
Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences, Department of Biology.
2007 (English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Each year millions of wild and hatchery juvenile pink salmon enter the waters of Prince William Sound (PWS) in the northern Gulf of Alaska. By mid summer, they begin to migrate out of PWS, first into the Alaska Coastal Current (ACC), and then into Shelf waters, where they forage and grow prior to migrating offshore in the fall. Differences in feeding and growth conditions among PWS, ACC, and Shelf habitats are likely to affect growth during the first summer, and ultimately cohort survival. In July-September of 2001-2004, we collected juvenile pink salmon with a surface trawl in PWS, ACC and Shelf habitats, to determine their seasonal distribution, diet, and growth. In July of all years, catch per unit effort was relatively high in PWS and ACC habits, and low in the Shelf habitat. By August and September this pattern had reversed, with most fish being caught in the Shelf habitat. Fish from year classes that subsequently showed higher adult survivals (2002 and 2004) were larger, and they tended to migrate into Shelf habitats earlier than did those with lower adult survivals (2001 and 2003). Using thermal mark recovery of PWS hatchery cohorts, we compared the size of known-age fish in the different habitats. In three of four years, hatchery fish of the same age were significantly larger in Shelf habitats than they were in ACC or PWS habitats. In general, hatchery cohorts that had larger juveniles in late summer had higher adult survivals, but there was considerable variation in this trend both among hatcheries and among years

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
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Biological Sciences
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URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-23262OAI: diva2:597017
9th Annual Salmon Ocean Ecology Meeting, Newport, Oregon, USA
Available from: 2013-01-22 Created: 2013-01-22 Last updated: 2013-01-22

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