Assessment of long-term changes in habitat availability for Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in a temperate lake using oxygen profiles and hydroacoustic surveys
Article first published online: 16 NOV 2007
Volume 53, Issue 2, pages 393–402, February 2008
How to Cite
JONES, I. D., WINFIELD, I. J. and CARSE, F. (2008), Assessment of long-term changes in habitat availability for Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in a temperate lake using oxygen profiles and hydroacoustic surveys. Freshwater Biology, 53: 393–402. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2427.2007.01902.x
- Issue published online: 16 NOV 2007
- Article first published online: 16 NOV 2007
- (Manuscript accepted 1 October 2007)
- echo sounding;
- vertical distribution
1. Hydroacoustics (2002–04) and long-term oxygen data (1969–2004) have been used in conjunction to examine the habitat of Arctic charr in the north and south basins of Windermere, U.K., a temperate lake subjected to cultural eutrophication and subsequent nutrient management.
2. Since 1969 there has been a gradual decline in the oxygen concentration in the bottom waters of both basins of 0.03–0.04 mg L−1year−1, resulting in up to 43% of the volume of the south basin having an oxygen concentration <5 mg L−1 in the early autumn.
3. Hydroacoustic data indicate that most Arctic charr routinely avoid the upper 10 m of the water column irrespective of temperature, with the implication that an observed gradual warming of the lake has not yet directly impacted upon their habitat.
4. In recent years there has been a behavioural response of the Arctic charr population to migrate vertically to avoid oxygen concentrations <2.3–3.1 mg L−1. Further, the depth of the lower bound of the Arctic charr population is shown to be highly correlated with the deep water oxygen concentration throughout the year prior to autumnal overturn.