The Ocean Tracking Network (OTN) is a global research, technology development, and partnership platform headquartered at Dalhousie University. UINR has been working with OTN helping to insert electronic tags that track the movement of Atlantic Salmon in and out of the Bras d’Or Lakes. This spring they were able to insert tags in salmon smolt that were captured in UINR’s smolt wheel in Middle River.

As an outcome from our work with OTN in 2012-2013, a paper was just published by Oxford University Press and the Society for Experimental Biology in the journal Conservation Physiology: “Condition-dependent migratory behaviour of endangered Atlantic salmon smolts moving through an inland sea.” The paper shows that half of the salmon smolt tagged migrate from Middle River into the Bras d’Or Lakes and then into the Atlantic Ocean. A significant number spent more than 70 days in the Lakes suggesting that some smolt stay in the Lakes.

You can watch a video of the tagging process and find a link to the paper at UINR’s Facebook page. Just search for #OceanTrackingNetwork.

Xavier Bordeleau–OTN, Kim Whoriskey–OTN, Sabrina Denny–student, Fred Whoriskey–OTN, Shelley Denny–UINR, Tyson Paul–UINR. Funding for the electronic tags was provided by Environment Canada’s Aboriginal Fund for Species at Risk.
OTN’s Xavier Bordeleau and Kim Whoriskey insert a tag in a salmon smolt.