Science

Sound Science Informs Our Work

Established as a scientific leader on fish and water issues in the state, California Trout roots its projects in research to drive innovative, science-based solutions to the state's resource issues.

Through its Science program, CalTrout improves its scientific foundation of applied conservation strategies while developing responses to statewide big-picture threats to native trout and salmon such as climate change, ongoing drought conditions, introduced and invasive species, and hatchery reform. The program enables CalTrout to provide scientific research, data collection, and analyses to inform adaptive management strategies and viable conservation alternatives aimed at restoring native trout and steelhead throughout their historical range

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2019 Priorities

Foodwebs and Fish To conduct field experiments to examine the effects of habitat, temperature, and food on the growth and presence of juvenile salmonids. We seek to better understand how temperature and food availability affects the flow of energy across different habitats and impacts the growth and survival of wild fish.

Little Shasta River Coho Salmon Research To conduct research on the effects of stream diversions on hydrology, geochemistry, habitat, benthic food webs, and the presence/absence of a federally listed species in the Little Shasta River in northern California.

Walker Creek To determine how salmon and steelhead use Walker Creek and identify habitats that promote juvenile rearing of listed species. The information will be used to inform wild coho salmon reintroduction efforts in the basin and inform reintroduction methods of endangered fishes elsewhere.

California Environmental Flows Framework (CEFF) To participate in a statewide collaborative effort to develop a set of methods and tools for establishing flow criteria to balance ecological and human uses in all rivers throughout California. Using a 'functional flows' approach the framework establishes coarse flow criteria for all streams in California and defines the steps for refining flow criteria depending on regional, local, or site specific context.

Accomplishments

The Peter B. Moyle and California Trout Endowed Chair in Coldwater Fishes

The Peter B. Moyle and California Trout Endowed Chair in Coldwater Fishes was established in honor of Dr. Moyle and the historical working relationship between CalTrout and UCD. Dr. Moyle’s research, teachings, and outreach are tied to California’s coldwater aquatic ecosystems, especially salmon, trout, and steelhead.

Two positions, created in 2014 between California Trout and the Center for Watershed Sciences, work toward these science goals: The Peter B. Moyle California Trout Endowed Chair in Coldwater Fishes and the CalTrout-UC Davis Wild and Coldwater Fish Researcher.

These positions were established to ensure that water resource issues with major policy and management implications continue to be informed by robust science. The findings from these collaborations have and will continue to inform broad-scale coldwater fish conservation strategies throughout California.

Academic Partners:

Published Papers

Stream macrophytes increase invertebrate production and fish habitat utilization in a California stream

Lusardi RA, Jeffres CA, Moyle PB. River Res Applic. 2018;1–10. View

Two-Way Trap and Haul as a Conservation Strategy for Anadromous Salmonids

Lusardi, Robert A. & Peter B. Moyle (2017) Fisheries, 42:9, 478-487. PDF

Managing diversions in unregulated streams using a modified percent-of-flow approach

Mierau DW, Trush WJ, Rossi GJ, Carah JK, Clifford MO, Howard JK. (2017) Freshwater Biol. 2017;00:1–17. View

Floodplain farm fields provide novel rearing habitat for Chinook salmon

Katz J, Jeffres C, Conrad JL, Sommer TR, Martinez J, Brumbaugh S, et al. (2017) PLoS ONE 12(6): e0177409. PDF

Population genetic structure and ancestry of steelhead/rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) at the extreme southern edge of their range in North America

Abadia-Cardoso A, Pearse DE, Jacobson S, Marshall J, Dalrymple D, Kawasaki F, Ruiz-Campos G, Garza JC (2016) Conserv Genet 17(3):675-689. PDF

A Regional Strategy for Protecting Instream Flows in North Coast California Watersheds

Trush, WJ, Mierau, D, Rossi, GJ (2016) Draft Technical Report. PDF

Genetic Analysis of Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in Southern California Coastal Rivers and Streams

Jacobson, S, et al. (2014) Final Report for California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Fisheries Restoration Grant Program; Project No. 0950015. PDF