Salmonid Spawning Habitat in Rivers: Physical Controls, Biological Responses, and Approaches to Remediation

Hydrological Influences on Adult Salmonid Migration, Spawning, and Embryo Survival

Chris Gibbins, Jeff Shellberg, Hamish Moir, and Chris Soulsby


This chapter considers how hydrological conditions influence spawning and embryo to fry survival in Atlantic and Pacific salmonid species. The presence of such a chapter in this volume hardly requires justification—the importance of hydrological conditions for a family of fish is, of course, self evident. However, the precise ways in which salmonids respond to hydrological conditions are far from fully understood. Previous chapters (Beechie et al. 2008; DeVries 2008; Miller et al. 2008; Sear et al. 2008; all this volume) have considered catchment- scale controls on river channel geomorphic and sedimentary conditions, both across space and through time. The current chapter therefore concentrates on how these geomorphic conditions interact with hydrological regimes to influence the movement of fish to their spawning areas, spawning site selection, and the survival of eggs and alevins.