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Subject: Re: Impacts of divers (noise thereof and in general)
From: "Piorkowski, Robert J (DFG)" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Scientific forum on fish and fisheries <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 11 Mar 2009 09:18:26 -0800

text/plain (141 lines)

I have a question for the group sort of along these lines.

I run the freshwater fisheries resource permit program for the Alaska
Department of Fish and Game. With high fuel prices still vivid in the
minds of many, a number of remote villages in Alaska, located on large
rivers, are looking into the possibility of installing small, run of the
river hydro-electric generators thereby reducing remote village fuel
costs. Studies to better understand possible impacts these units might
have on fisheries resources, especially salmon and whitefish, are now
being developed. There is concern that these units could kill fish in
their turbines and/or drive fish away from feeding areas or traditional
migration routes with the vibrations.

Are there any papers out there that investigated these issues in other

Thanks in advance for your help. Wishing you all the best,



Bob Piorkowski, Ph.D.
Alaska Department of Fish and Game-SF
Box 115526, Juneau, Alaska 99811-5526
Work (907)465-6109 Fax (907)465-2772
[log in to unmask]

-----Original Message-----
From: Scientific forum on fish and fisheries
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Adam Payne
Sent: Wednesday, March 11, 2009 8:59 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Impacts of divers

I work on Environmental Impact Assessment, especially with regards to
fish ecology. I have never come across this before.

We work a lot on the hearing capabilities of fish and impacts of noise.
Generally salmonids are not as sensitive to noise as Clupeids.  If they
are not normally disturbed by boat noise or other noise impacts, I doubt
divers will be of any concern in that regard.

As for a visual impact I think that is covered by the previous response.

It sounds like someone is taking concerns on environmental impacts a
little too far...

Dr Adam Payne
EPD Marine Oil & Gas

Eaton House
Walbrook Court
North Hinksey Lane
Oxford OX2 0QS

T: +44 1865 384 869 (Direct)
F: +44 1865 384 848
M: +44 7717 004 227

[log in to unmask]

-----Original Message-----
From: Scientific forum on fish and fisheries
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of [log in to unmask]
Sent: 11 March 2009 16:54
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Impacts of divers

who raised the question and God bless their pointy head ------ I have
dived many streams and small rivers and have never observed any
behavior by salmonids except a careful cautionary gaze and a tendency to
their comfort distance ---- if your divers want to chase the sockeye
would  probably tire them some and waste air --- so don't do that

I am  working on a project that will replace some anchor cables on the
two  floating bridges that cross Lake Washington in Seattle, Washington.
The  project will use a pair of divers to replace these cables in water
from 40  to 200 feet deep.  Lake Washington is the largest lake in
Western  Washington, and supports a number of salmonid species,
anadromous  sockeye.  Adult sockeye are known to find thermal refuge at
50 to 90  feet deep during the warmest part of the summer, and this
season the  population is expected to be 105,000.

A question has arisen on the  potential impact that two divers would
on these fish, and I am at a  loss to find a source of information.
anyone know, or can anyone  provide best professional judgment, on the
potential impact of a pair of  divers moving vertically through the
thermal refuge layers where sockeye  would be dispersed?

Brian Bigler
NW Region Biology Program  Manager
Washington State Department of Transportation
Seattle, WA
Direct: 206-440-4519
Cell:    206-919-1610
FAX:   206-440-4805

Nelson Resources Consulting, Inc.
954 653  8295
561 449 9637
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