Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Evaluation of a floating fish guidance structure at a hydrodynamically complex river junction in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta, California, USA

Jason G. Romine A E , Russell W. Perry A , Adam C. Pope A , Paul Stumpner B , Theresa L. Liedtke A , Kevin K. Kumagai C and Ryan L. Reeves D

A US Geological Survey, Western Fisheries Research Center, 5501-A Cook Underwood Road, Cook, WA 98605, USA.

B US Geological Survey, California Water Science Center, 8550 23rd Avenue, Sacramento, CA 95826, USA.

C Hydroacoustic Technology, Inc., 715 NE Northlake Way, Seattle, WA 98105, USA.

D California Department of Water Resources, Bay-Delta Office, 1416 9th Street, Room 215-37, Sacramento, CA 95814, USA.

E Corresponding author. Present address: US Fish and Wildlife Service, Mid-Columbia River National Wildlife Refuge Complex, 64 Maple Street, Burbank, WA 99323, USA. Email: jason_romine@fws.gov

Marine and Freshwater Research - http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/MF15285
Submitted: 30 July 2015  Accepted: 1 May 2016   Published online: 20 July 2016

Abstract

Survival of out-migrating juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River delta, California, USA, varies by migration route. Survival of salmonids that enter the interior and southern Delta can be as low as half that of salmonids that remain in the main-stem Sacramento River. Reducing entrainment into the higher-mortality routes, such as Georgiana Slough, should increase overall survival. In spring 2014, a floating fish-guidance structure (FFGS) designed to reduce entrainment into Georgiana Slough was deployed just upstream of the Georgiana Slough divergence. We used acoustic telemetry to evaluate the effect of the FFGS on Chinook entrainment to Georgiana Slough. At intermediate discharge (200–400 m3 s–1), entrainment into Georgiana Slough was five percentage points lower when the FFGS was in the on state (19.1% on; 23.9% off). At higher discharge (>400 m3 s–1), entrainment was higher when the FFGS was in the on state (19.3% on; 9.7% off), and at lower discharge (0–200 m3 s–1) entrainment was lower when the FFGS was in the on state (43.7% on; 47.3% off). We found that discharge, cross-stream fish position, time of day, and proportion of flow remaining in the Sacramento River contributed to the probability of being entrained to Georgiana Slough.


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