From Headwater to Headland
Improving smolt survival in rivers and estuaries
Over 100 delegates attended this Conference, which took place in Berwick-upon-Tweed on 14 and 15 March. Organised by the Atlantic Salmon Trust and The Tweed Foundation, it brought together scientists, fisheries managers and anglers from all parts of the British Isles, Canada and Scandinavia to hear a range of presentations about all aspects of smolt survival for both salmon and sea trout.
Sessions considered the impacts on smolt survival of factors in freshwater, such as pollution, migration in rivers, estuaries and coastal waters and the effects of predation. At a time when fewer salmon are surviving at sea to return as adults, the Conference highlighted not only the importance of ensuring that as many smolts as possible leave our rivers and estuaries, but also that surprisingly little is known about levels of loss in these environments and the relative importance of the different causes. There is increasing evidence, though, that losses in rivers during downstream migration can be high.
The whole Conference was recorded, and videos of the presentations (see HERE) and of the discussions sessions will be made available to view online. A report of the Conference is also being prepared; this will summarise the key issues discussed and the gaps in our knowledge that were identified. This, too, will be available online.