Survival and progression rates of large European silver eel Anguilla anguilla in late freshwater and early marine phases

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The population of European silver eel Anguilla anguilla has declined tremendously in the last decades. The cause of this decline is unknown, and it is necessary to investigate the migratory behaviour and survival rates of silver eels during the reproductive migration in order to understand if the decline is related to factors acting during that migration. We estimated survival and progression rates of European silver eel migrating in the lower part of the River Gudenaa and during the first phase of the marine migration in the Randers Fjord in Denmark. Fifty migrating silver eel (total body length: 56 to 84 cm) were captured, and each was equipped with an acoustic transmitter. Their migration was subsequently monitored using an array of automatic listening stations, and progression rate and mortality in the river, inner part of the fjord and outer part of the fjord were estimated. Survival was high in fresh water. However, 60% of eels were lost in the inner and outer fjord, supporting the hypothesis that mortality is large in the early phase of the marine migration and that fishing may be a major cause of mortality of silver eels. There was no indication that the slowest-migrating individuals were more prone to fishing mortality than the faster-migrating individuals. Progression rate increased as the eels proceeded downriver and out of the fjord. The migration was predominantly nocturnal, both in the river and fjord. Based on the available evidence, a considerable increase in eel survival in the river–fjord system will be needed in order to fulfil the goals in the European Union recovery plan for eels.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAquatic Biology
Volume9
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)263-270
ISSN1864-7782
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Cite this

@article{24ae689889d948c1a82a890cddb98518,
title = "Survival and progression rates of large European silver eel Anguilla anguilla in late freshwater and early marine phases",
abstract = "The population of European silver eel Anguilla anguilla has declined tremendously in the last decades. The cause of this decline is unknown, and it is necessary to investigate the migratory behaviour and survival rates of silver eels during the reproductive migration in order to understand if the decline is related to factors acting during that migration. We estimated survival and progression rates of European silver eel migrating in the lower part of the River Gudenaa and during the first phase of the marine migration in the Randers Fjord in Denmark. Fifty migrating silver eel (total body length: 56 to 84 cm) were captured, and each was equipped with an acoustic transmitter. Their migration was subsequently monitored using an array of automatic listening stations, and progression rate and mortality in the river, inner part of the fjord and outer part of the fjord were estimated. Survival was high in fresh water. However, 60{\%} of eels were lost in the inner and outer fjord, supporting the hypothesis that mortality is large in the early phase of the marine migration and that fishing may be a major cause of mortality of silver eels. There was no indication that the slowest-migrating individuals were more prone to fishing mortality than the faster-migrating individuals. Progression rate increased as the eels proceeded downriver and out of the fjord. The migration was predominantly nocturnal, both in the river and fjord. Based on the available evidence, a considerable increase in eel survival in the river–fjord system will be needed in order to fulfil the goals in the European Union recovery plan for eels.",
author = "Kim Aarestrup and Thorstad, {Eva B.} and Anders Koed and Svendsen, {Jon Christian} and Niels Jepsen and Pedersen, {Michael Ingemann} and Finn {\O}kland",
year = "2010",
doi = "10.3354/ab00260",
language = "English",
volume = "9",
pages = "263--270",
journal = "Aquatic Biology",
issn = "1864-7782",
publisher = "Inter Research",
number = "3",

}

Survival and progression rates of large European silver eel Anguilla anguilla in late freshwater and early marine phases. / Aarestrup, Kim; Thorstad, Eva B.; Koed, Anders; Svendsen, Jon Christian; Jepsen, Niels; Pedersen, Michael Ingemann; Økland, Finn.

In: Aquatic Biology, Vol. 9, No. 3, 2010, p. 263-270.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Survival and progression rates of large European silver eel Anguilla anguilla in late freshwater and early marine phases

AU - Aarestrup, Kim

AU - Thorstad, Eva B.

AU - Koed, Anders

AU - Svendsen, Jon Christian

AU - Jepsen, Niels

AU - Pedersen, Michael Ingemann

AU - Økland, Finn

PY - 2010

Y1 - 2010

N2 - The population of European silver eel Anguilla anguilla has declined tremendously in the last decades. The cause of this decline is unknown, and it is necessary to investigate the migratory behaviour and survival rates of silver eels during the reproductive migration in order to understand if the decline is related to factors acting during that migration. We estimated survival and progression rates of European silver eel migrating in the lower part of the River Gudenaa and during the first phase of the marine migration in the Randers Fjord in Denmark. Fifty migrating silver eel (total body length: 56 to 84 cm) were captured, and each was equipped with an acoustic transmitter. Their migration was subsequently monitored using an array of automatic listening stations, and progression rate and mortality in the river, inner part of the fjord and outer part of the fjord were estimated. Survival was high in fresh water. However, 60% of eels were lost in the inner and outer fjord, supporting the hypothesis that mortality is large in the early phase of the marine migration and that fishing may be a major cause of mortality of silver eels. There was no indication that the slowest-migrating individuals were more prone to fishing mortality than the faster-migrating individuals. Progression rate increased as the eels proceeded downriver and out of the fjord. The migration was predominantly nocturnal, both in the river and fjord. Based on the available evidence, a considerable increase in eel survival in the river–fjord system will be needed in order to fulfil the goals in the European Union recovery plan for eels.

AB - The population of European silver eel Anguilla anguilla has declined tremendously in the last decades. The cause of this decline is unknown, and it is necessary to investigate the migratory behaviour and survival rates of silver eels during the reproductive migration in order to understand if the decline is related to factors acting during that migration. We estimated survival and progression rates of European silver eel migrating in the lower part of the River Gudenaa and during the first phase of the marine migration in the Randers Fjord in Denmark. Fifty migrating silver eel (total body length: 56 to 84 cm) were captured, and each was equipped with an acoustic transmitter. Their migration was subsequently monitored using an array of automatic listening stations, and progression rate and mortality in the river, inner part of the fjord and outer part of the fjord were estimated. Survival was high in fresh water. However, 60% of eels were lost in the inner and outer fjord, supporting the hypothesis that mortality is large in the early phase of the marine migration and that fishing may be a major cause of mortality of silver eels. There was no indication that the slowest-migrating individuals were more prone to fishing mortality than the faster-migrating individuals. Progression rate increased as the eels proceeded downriver and out of the fjord. The migration was predominantly nocturnal, both in the river and fjord. Based on the available evidence, a considerable increase in eel survival in the river–fjord system will be needed in order to fulfil the goals in the European Union recovery plan for eels.

U2 - 10.3354/ab00260

DO - 10.3354/ab00260

M3 - Journal article

VL - 9

SP - 263

EP - 270

JO - Aquatic Biology

JF - Aquatic Biology

SN - 1864-7782

IS - 3

ER -