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Evaluate Bull Trout Movements in the Tucannon and Lower Snake Rivers, 2001-2001

Category: Fish/Shellfish Research and Management - Fish/Shellfish Research

Date Published: April 22, 2003

Number of Pages: 22

Author(s): Micheal P. Faler, Glen Mendel and Carl Fulton


We collected, radio-tagged, and PIT-tagged 41 bull trout at the Tucannon River Hatchery trap from May 17, through June 14, 2002. An additional 65 bull trout were also collected and PIT tagged by June 24, at which time we ceased PIT tagging operations because water temperatures were reaching 16.0°C or higher on a regular basis. Six radio-tags were recovered shortly after tagging, and as a result, 35 remained in the river through November 30, 2002.

During the month of July, radio-tagged bull trout exhibited a general upstream movement into the upper reaches of the Tucannon Subbasin. We began to observe some downstream movements of radio-tagged bull trout in mid to late September and throughout October. These movements appeared to be associated with post spawning migrations. As of November 30, radio tagged bull trout were relatively stationary, and distributed from the headwaters downstream to river mile 11.3, near Pataha Creek. None of the radio-tagged bull trout left the Tucannon Subbasin and entered the federal hydropower system on the mainstem Snake River.

We conducted some initial transmission tests of submerged radio tags at depths of 25, 35, 45, and 55 ft. in Lower Monumental Pool to test our capability of detection at these depths. Equipment used included Lotek model MCFT-3A transmitters, an SRX 400 receiver, a 4 element Yagi antenna, and a Lotek “H” antenna. Test results indicated that depth transmission of these tags was poor; only the transmitter placed at 25 ft. was audibly detectable.

Suggested Citation:
Faler, Michael, Glen Mendel, Carl Fulton, ''Evaluate Bull Trout Movements in the Tucannon and Lower Snake Rivers'', Project No. 2002-00600, 20 electronic pages, (BPA Report DOE/BP-00009774-1)