Salmon population monitoring in England and Wales (E&W): Informing stock assessment and management

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1 Salmon population monitoring in England and Wales (E&W): Informing stock assessment and management

2 Salmon population monitoring in England and Wales (E&W): Informing stock assessment and management Fisheries management (including monitoring) in England and Wales (E&W) is largely the responsibility of two public bodies: (i) Environment Agency (EA) (ii) Natural Resources Wales (NRW) Prior to 1 st April 2013, both jurisdictions (England and Wales) were covered by the Environment Agency. EA and NRW still retain similar approaches to working - including common systems supporting fisheries monitoring.

3 Extent of the resource: 80 rivers in E&W regularly support salmon. This includes 68 principal rivers all with Salmon Action Plans and Conservation Limits (CLs) Also 17 SAC (Special Areas of Conservation) rivers with salmon as a named feature.

4 Extent of the resource: All support salmon rod fisheries - latest 10-year mean catch ranging from 2 (Gwyrfai/Piddle) to ~4,000 (Tyne). Some also have net fisheries - mean catch ranging from 0 (27 fisheries) to ~6,000 (NE coast drift nets).

5 Monitoring activities:

6 Monitoring activities:

7 Monitoring activities: Collected via a licence return from all (~80) rivers (~275 net licences; 35,000 rod licences). National E&W rod licence in place since 1992 (regional licences before then). Long-term data sets (100+ years in some cases). Include sea trout as well as salmon. Catchment scale. Provide measures of stock as well as fishery performance.

8 Monitoring activities: Data: Catch (killed/released) Fishing effort (licences/days/tides) CPUE Timing (day/week/month) Fishing method Weight composition Socio-economics (e.g. demographics/expenditure) Local schemes (e.g. logbooks/scale sampling)

9 Monitoring activities:

10 Monitoring activities: Include all main salmon rivers. Provide measures of fry/parr abundance and distribution. Medium term data sets (30+ years in some cases). Include trout as well as salmon. Site/sub-catchment scale.

11 Monitoring activities: Include all principal salmon rivers (and other smaller National systems). programme with survey design common to E&W. Provide measures of fry/parr abundance. Most sites 30-50m long and fished semiquantitatively term data sets (single (30+ run/un-netted). years in some Medium cases). Summer sampling (~July-September). Include trout as well as salmon. Survey design includes sites fished Site/subcatchment annually/biannually scale. and 6-yearly to detect temporal and spatial changes (~600 sites per year).

12 Monitoring activities: Data: Abundance (count/density) Length composition Age composition (fry/parr) Site features (length/width/area/habitat)

13 Monitoring activities:

14 Monitoring activities: 8 counters currently provide Returning Stock Estimates (RSEs) for salmon. Time-series: 9-27 years. 4 of the above counters also produce RSEs for sea trout. Catchment scale.

15 Monitoring activities: Data: Run size (daily/monthly/annual) Run timing (daily/monthly/annual) Size composition (signal strength/video) Speciation (signal strength/video) Environmental variables (e.g flow/temperature)

16 Monitoring activities:

17 Monitoring activities: Primarily confined to the Index Rivers (Tamar; Dee; Lune) plus some others (e.g. Caldew,Taff). Collect biological information from returning fish (e.g. age and size composition) Combined with RSEs on the Index Rivers (RSEs on the Dee derived from trapping/mark-recapture). Time-series: years. Include sea trout as well as salmon. Catchment scale.

18 Monitoring activities: Data: Run size (River Dee only - monthly/annual) Run timing (daily/monthly/annual) Age composition (sea/river) Size composition (length/weight) Sex (external characteristics) General condition (e.g. parasites/disease) Screening for tag returns (e.g CWTags) Environmental variables (e.g flow/temperature) Other (e.g. back-calculated freshwater/marine growth)

19 Monitoring activities:

20 Monitoring activities: Mainly confined to the Index Rivers (Frome; Tamar; Dee). Primary purpose to produce mark-recapture estimates of smolt output and return rate. Time-series: years. Include sea trout as well as salmon. Catchment scale.

21 Monitoring activities: Data: Run size (annual) Run timing (daily/monthly) Return rates as adults ("marine suvival") Age composition (river) Size composition (length/weight) Environmental variables (e.g flow/temperature) Other (e.g. back-calculated freshwater growth)

22 Monitoring activities: All ~80 salmon rivers

23 Monitoring activities: All ~80 salmon rivers All ~80 salmon rivers

24 Monitoring activities: All ~80 salmon rivers Tyne Kent All ~80 salmon rivers Lune Dee 8 counted rivers producing salmon RSEs Fowey Tamar Frome Test and Itchen Hants Avon

25 Monitoring activities: All ~80 salmon rivers Tyne All ~80 salmon rivers 8 counted rivers producing salmon RSEs Lune Dee 4 adult trapping/tagging programmes associated with Index Rivers Tamar

26 Monitoring activities: All ~80 salmon rivers All ~80 salmon rivers Dee 8 counted rivers producing salmon RSEs 4 adult trapping/tagging programmes associated with Index Rivers 3 smolt trapping/tagging programmes associated with Index Rivers Tamar Frome

27 Application of monitoring data: Assessment procedures: Data from all sources are integrated and applied in wide variety of ways in stock and fishery assessments. This includes the use of generic stock assessment models applied nationally to adults (e.g. Conservation Limit compliance procedures) and juveniles (e.g. WFD fish classification of Water Body ecological status ). Additional information on stock biology and environmental factors is used alongside these standard assessment methods in reviewing stock status.

28 Application of monitoring data: Applications include: Annual assessment and reporting of salmon stock status and fishery performance to meet national (E&W) and international (ICES /NASCO) obligations. River Basin Management Planning (6-yearly cycle) to identify and address environmental issues on failing Water Bodies. Implementation and review of fisheries regulations and controls (e.g. Net Limitation Orders and byelaws). Tracking of long-term changes in stock abundance and composition to improve understanding of factors influencing change and to better inform fisheries and environmental management.

29 Example: Development and use of Conservation Limits Data: Procedure: Purpose/Application: Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort Spawning escapement/egg deposition estimates Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Habitat variables Carrying capacity modelling 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

30 Smolts Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Derived stock-recruitment curve for the River Severn Example: Development and use of 180, ,000 Conservation 140,000 Limits 120, ,000 80,000 Data: Procedure: 60,000 Purpose/Application: 40,000 Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort 20,000 Spawning 0 escapement/egg deposition estimates Eggs (millions) Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Carrying capacity modelling Habitat variables 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

31 Smolts Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Derived stock-recruitment curve for the River Severn Example: Development and use of 180, ,000 Conservation 140,000 Limits 120, ,000 80,000 Data: Procedure: 60,000 Purpose/Application: 40,000 Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort 20,000 Spawning 0 escapement/egg deposition estimates Eggs (millions) Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Carrying capacity modelling Habitat variables 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

32 Smolts Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Derived stock-recruitment curve for the River Severn Example: Development and use of 180, ,000 Conservation 140,000 Limits 120, ,000 80,000 Data: Procedure: 60,000 Purpose/Application: 40,000 Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort 20,000 Spawning 0 escapement/egg deposition estimates Eggs (millions) Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Carrying capacity modelling Habitat variables 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

33 Example: Development and use of Conservation Limits Data: Procedure: Purpose/Application: Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort Spawning escapement/egg deposition estimates Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Habitat variables Carrying capacity modelling 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

34 Example: Development and use of Conservation Limits Data: Procedure: Purpose/Application: Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort Spawning escapement/egg deposition estimates Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment Fry/parr abundance estimates Habitat variables 'Returning Stock Estimates' Carrying capacity modelling Exploitation rate modelling Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling Log10 Extant angling exploitation rate (%) Salmon rod exploitation rates: All rivers ex Test and Itchen R2 = P= < Frome Tamar Fowey Dee Lune Kent Tyne Hants Avon Leven Tamar Sea trout Fowey Sea trout Dee Sea trout Kent Sea trout Angling effort per km fishery

35 Proportion of grilseby month Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Development and use of Conservation Limits Data: Procedure: Purpose/Application: Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort Spawning escapement/egg deposition estimates June Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment July Fry/parr abundance estimates Carrying capacity modelling August Habitat variables September 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling October Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data November Decemeber Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling Weight (Lbs)

36 Smolts Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Development and use of Conservation Limits Data: Procedure: Purpose/Application: Rod catch statistics Catch (number, weight composition, C&R) Fishing effort 250,000 Spawning escapement/egg deposition estimates Conservation Limit development and compliance assessment River Dee: Egg-to-smolt Ricker S-R relationship Fry/parr abundance estimates Carrying capacity modelling 200,000 Habitat variables 150,000 'Returning Stock Estimates' Exploitation rate modelling 100,000 50,000 Biological characteristics Age-weight keys (e.g. age; size; sex) Other biological data Eggs (millions) Smolt output and return ('marine survival') Stock-recruitment modelling

37 Run estimate Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition 12,000 10,000 Salmon run estimate; River Dee All sea ages 8,000 6,000 4,000 2, Return year

38 % Return to homewaters Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition 10.0 Salmon smolt return rates ; River Dee, Smolt year

39 Sea age composition Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition 100% Salmon sea age composition; River Dee, % 60% 40% 20% 0% Return year Previous spawners 4SW fish 3SW fish 2SW fish 1SW fish

40 Mean smolt age Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition 2.20 Mean smolt age; River Dee salmon, SW fish 2SW fish Smolt year

41 Mean Condition Factor Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition Variation in Fulton's Condition Factor: River Dee salmon, all months, SW fish 2SW fish Adult return year

42 Mean Condition Factor % Return to homewaters Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition R2 = P =< Fulton's condition factor Variation in Fulton's Condition Factor: River Dee salmon, all months, SW fish 2SW fish Adult return year

43 Mean weight (g) Salmon population monitoring in E&W: Morfish conference, 3 rd March 2015 Example: Long-term changes in stock abundance and composition Variation in weight: River Dee Salmon, all months, SW fish 2SW fish Adult return year

44

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