"Smolt" is a life-stage of a juvenile salmon. This life stage occurs when a juvenile salmon begins its migration from freshwater to the estuary and adjusts to living in saltwater. Different Pacific Salmon species spend different amounts of time rearing in freshwater. Coho salmon, the focus of our study, spend one to two years rearing in freshwater after they emerge from the gravel as fry. Coho reach about 50 to 100 millimeters in size before they smolt and begin migration to the estuary. The timing of this movement correlates with the snowmelt in the upper watershed in spring.
The Lost Shoe Creek LS3B Smolt Trap was initiated in 2007 as an annual monitoring project. The smolt trap is in operation from May to June and is checked daily by CWFS staff and with the help of local volunteers. The species, size, and weight of all fish caught are recorded before the fish is safely released downstream. The trap will help us monitor Coho salmon populations from the upstream habitat above the trap site, for a given time period. This information will help us evaluate the health of the upstream habitat where significant logging and no restoration has occurred. When sufficient data has been collected restoration can proceed and the smolt trap will then be used to monitor the effectiveness of restoration efforts at improving salmonid production in the LS3B sub-watershed.
In 2013, a new smolt trap was constructed and installed at the Lost Shoe Creek Off-Channel Habitat. This trap was used to assess the productivity of the newly constructed fish habitat. The information is also being used to evaluate the difference in salmonid production in the off-channel habitat versus the LS3B sub-watershed.
For more information on the 2015 Lost Shoe Creek Smolt Trap.pdf
For more information on the 2014 Lost Shoe Creek Smolt Trap.pdf
For more information on the Off-Channel Habitat Project
For more information on the 2010 Smolt Trap.pdf