Map from study showing that tagged Irish salmon primarily migrated westward towards East Greenland
Southernmost populations, like those of Ireland, are more at risk than northernmost populations as migration distances are likely to become longer, or more variable, thereby decreasing feeding time, with important consequences for the marine survival and productivity of different populations.
Taken together, these findings suggest that a common marine factor responsible for the decline in Atlantic salmon is unlikely. Importantly, this means conservation efforts should be focused locally, such as during the freshwater phase.
Dr Cathal Gallagher is the Head of Research with Inland Fisheries Ireland and he explains why the state agency was keen to support the study, saying: “Although the Atlantic salmon is one of the world’s most studied fish, detailed knowledge of its migration route at sea has been limited until now. This important large-scale study highlights the vulnerability of salmon populations to climate change and emphasises the need for continued conservation, to protect Atlantic salmon and its habitats.”
The full study, ‘Redefining the oceanic distribution of Atlantic salmon,’ can be found at Nature.com at https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-91137-y
Notes to Editor:
The full study, published on June 10th 2021, can be viewed from the Nature.com website at https://rdcu.be/cmu7K
Rikardsen, A.H., Righton, D., Strøm, J.F. et al. Redefining the oceanic distribution of Atlantic salmon. Sci Rep 11, 12266 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-91137-y
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About Inland Fisheries Ireland https://www.fisheriesireland.ie/
Inland Fisheries Ireland is a statutory body operating under the aegis of the Department of Environment, Climate and Communication (DECC) and was established under the Fisheries Act on 1st July 2010. Its principal function is the protection and conservation of the inland fisheries resource. Inland Fisheries Ireland promotes supports, facilitates and advises the Minister on the conservation, protection, management, development and improvement of inland fisheries, including sea angling. Inland Fisheries Ireland also develops policy and national strategies relating to inland fisheries and sea angling and advises the Minister on same.