Dr. Amy Ulappa
Understanding the ability of Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis to jump vertical plunges is essential to fish conservation efforts aiming to protect native species. This information is useful for management strategies that seek to limit the movement of Brook Trout in areas where they have been introduced and pose a risk to native species. It is also useful for strategies seeking to maintain or restore connectivity within the native range of Brook Trout. While previous efforts have described the jumping ability of hatchery-reared Brook Trout, additional work is needed to determine the maximum jump height of wild Brook Trout less than 100 mm in length. Our objective was to determine the maximum jump height of wild Brook Trout ranging from 50-99 mm in length (69.6 mm mean total length) by exposing fish to vertical plunges of varying heights while maintaining a plunge pool depth of 50 cm. Fish successfully passed over plunge heights of 0, 10, and 20 cm but did not pass a 30 cm plunge height. This suggests that wild Brook Trout in the size class we evaluated cannot jump a 30 cm fall. We anticipate this information will aid management agencies in designing impassable barriers and, conversely, toward efforts that seek to facilitate the ability of Brook Trout to move freely within their native range.
Comer, Clara and Gamett, Bart, "The Jumping Ability of Wild Age-0 Brook Trout" (2022). 2022 Undergraduate Research Showcase. 72.