Increasing experimental approaches in stream trout research – 1987–2006


Professor Emeritus Thomas G. Northcote. Current address: 10193 Morrison Close, Summerland, B.C. Canada VOH 1Z7.

J. Lobón-Cerviá, National Museum of Natural Sciences (CSIC). C/José Gutiérrez Abascal, 2. MADRID 28006-spain.


Abstract –  This review of stream trout research literature for the 1987–2006 period covered >1300 papers dealing with 22 relevant topics, when compared with <400 papers on 18 topics in the previous one (1967–1986). The percentage of experimental approaches here quantified for both research reviews was 18% in the 1967–1976 period, increased to 21% in 1977–1986, to 39% in 1987–1996, and up to 43% in 1997–2006. Particular journals in the recent two decadal period published high percentages of experimental papers (The Journal of Animal Ecology and Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences; 62.9% and 62.4%, respectively), others, intermediate percentages (Nordic Journal of Fisheries Research, Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, North American Journal of Fisheries Management and Ecology of Freshwater Fish: 44.1%, 42.4%, 40.5%, and 35.6%, respectively); the remainder covered ≤33%. Research papers on stream ‘trouts’ published over the last two decades were classified into 22 subject areas for nine major journals separately and combined for 55 other journals. Subject areas dealing with the biology and ecology of trout redds, egg development, alevin emergence and onto fry and parr were the most heavily reported in nine major journals, as well as in all other journals combined. Habitat characteristics and cover use by trout were the next. Atlantic salmon and brown trout were the species with highest publication coverage in nearly all subject areas, with low coverage for all salvelinid (charr) species except brook charr. Research on Atlantic salmon in the UK used experimental approaches in nearly 60% of publications and in mid to high 30% for those on Atlantic salmon and brown trout in Scandinavian countries. Consideration is given to future research needs for stream trouts.