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Evaluation of fish avoidance to acoustic vessels

CBFS scientist Rudstam and Simonin teamed up with Dufour and Deller from Ohio Department of Natural Resources and Kocovksy from the USGS Great Lakes Science Center to evaluate the importance of vessel avoidance for acoustics surveys in Lake Erie.  Three vessels ranging in lengths from 7 to 60 m equipped with similar hydroacoustics units were used simultaneously in Central Lake Erie.  Fish abundances obtained by the three vessels were highly correlated but absolute values were significantly different by ~20%, highlighting differential responses of the fish populations to these vessels and the importance of inter-vessel comparisons in fisheries surveys.  This paper was published in Fisheries Research last week and is available for free download for the next 50 days using the link provided.

DuFour, M., P. M. Kocovsky, J. Deller, P. W. Simonin, and L. G. Rudstam. 2021. Hydroacoustic survey standardization: Inter-vessel differences in fish densities and potential effects of vessel avoidance. Fisheries Research 239:105948.