Type of Presentation

Oral

Session Title

Contaminants of Emerging Concern: Intersection of Occurrence, Impacts, Research, and Policy

Description

In areas of the Salish Sea watershed with elevated vehicular traffic density, stormwater runoff causes pre-spawning mortality (PSM) in adult coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kistuch). Within a few hours of exposure, symptoms progress from lethargy and disorientation to loss of equilibrium, immobility, and eventually death. Although we do not know the precise cause of PSM, we previously determined that coho PSM is linked to storm events. Chum salmon (O. keta) spawning runs often overlap with coho. To determine whether chum are similarly susceptible to PSM, we co-exposed pre-spawn adult coho and chum to urban road runoff or well water in controlled exposures for 6 storm events. We monitored water quality and individual behavior throughout exposure. Exposures were terminated after 4 h or when fish became symptomatic. Only coho exposed to runoff became symptomatic. Across the 4-h exposure, chum appeared behaviorally unaffected by urban runoff. Furthermore, we employed a point-of-care blood analysis tool to measure a variety of blood parameters including ion concentrations and gases, pH, hematocrit, glucose, and lactate. Multiple blood chemistry parameters were affected in runoff-exposed coho compared to control coho. In contrast, chum exposed to runoff were much less sensitive than controls.

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Urban runoff differentially affects coho and chum salmon spawners

2016SSEC

In areas of the Salish Sea watershed with elevated vehicular traffic density, stormwater runoff causes pre-spawning mortality (PSM) in adult coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kistuch). Within a few hours of exposure, symptoms progress from lethargy and disorientation to loss of equilibrium, immobility, and eventually death. Although we do not know the precise cause of PSM, we previously determined that coho PSM is linked to storm events. Chum salmon (O. keta) spawning runs often overlap with coho. To determine whether chum are similarly susceptible to PSM, we co-exposed pre-spawn adult coho and chum to urban road runoff or well water in controlled exposures for 6 storm events. We monitored water quality and individual behavior throughout exposure. Exposures were terminated after 4 h or when fish became symptomatic. Only coho exposed to runoff became symptomatic. Across the 4-h exposure, chum appeared behaviorally unaffected by urban runoff. Furthermore, we employed a point-of-care blood analysis tool to measure a variety of blood parameters including ion concentrations and gases, pH, hematocrit, glucose, and lactate. Multiple blood chemistry parameters were affected in runoff-exposed coho compared to control coho. In contrast, chum exposed to runoff were much less sensitive than controls.