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Title: Swimming Speeds in Fish: phase 2
Author: S.C. Clough
Author: I.E. Lee-Elliott
Author: A.W.H. Turnpenny
Author: S.D.J. Holden
Author: C. Hinks
Author: Environment Agency
Document Type: Monograph
Annotation: Environment Agency Project ID:EAPRJOUT_1215, Representation ID: 388, Object ID: 2431
Phase 1 of the current project collected robust swimming performance data and developed a computer model (‘SWIMIT’) to describe the swimming performance of five British freshwater fish species. The objectives of Phase 2 of the project were to gather comparable data for further species and lifestages, and to update the ‘SWIMIT’ computer model to cover all the species and lifestages tested to date. Phase 2 study species were: barbel (Barbus barbus (L.)); grayling (Thymallus thymallus (L.)); eel (Anguilla anguilla (L.)); bream (Abramis brama (L.)). In parallel to this work, a study of the swimming speeds of smelt (Osmerus eperlanus) was being conducted on behalf of Thames Water Utilities Ltd (TWU). TWU agreed that the results of the smelt study could be included in the SWIMIT v.2.0 programme, and the output from the smelt work could be appended to this report. A large (8 m long) flume tank was used to examine the endurance swimming of fish over a 200 minute period. This flume was modified prior to Phase 2 by replacing the paddle wheel drive system (used in Phase 1) with a propeller, allowing higher speeds to be achieved. Burst swimming performance was tested in a high-speed tunnel, where a large pump generated flow. In burst swimming tests, speed through the tunnel was increased incrementally until the fish could no longer maintain their position. From this, the Critical Burst Swimming Speed (CBSS) was estimated. In general, the mean CBSS tended to increase with increasing fish length (Figure ES2). There are however anomalies with regard to the effect of temperature, notably the tendency for reduced performance at high temperatures seen in both bream and the larger size classes of grayling. With the wild grayling, again some may not have been in perfect health, however this would not explain the reduced warm-temperature performance of the hatchery reared grayling, or of the bream. It is not clear why the burst swimming performance of these species falls with increasing temperature, but it could reflect a reduction in their motivation to achieve maximum performance, rather than a reduced physiological ability at higher temperatures.
Publisher: Environment Agency
Subject Keywords: WeirsSwimmingSpeedFish passesFreshwater fishesFreshwater ecology
Taxonomic Keywords: Thymallus thymallusOsmerus eperlanusBarbus barbus
Extent: 94
Total file downloads: 310

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