Fish Passage 2016: International Conference on River Connectivity
June 20-22, UMass Amherst hosted an important international forum for researchers and practitioners. The event was at capacity with attendees who have an interest in advancements in technical fishways, nature-like fishways, stream restoration and stabilization, dam removal and road ecology participating from around the world. Social issues surrounding connectivity projects were also explored including the myriad of funding opportunities, safety concerns, climate change, and more.
Plenary talks were held along with concurrent sessions in engineering, biology, management and monitoring techniques.
Patrick Cathbert, a fisheries biologist working for RIVERWATCHER http://www.riverwatcher.is/ and FISHBIO insert http://fishbio.com/ and RIVERWATCHER, held a fake fish aloft. He described the work his company undertakes to count river fish and to research, monitor and conserve them. They insert a scanner into the river to obtain an automated fish count. Riverwatcher monitors fish migration patterns in over 300 rivers world-wide in a wide variety of fish ladders, weirs and passes many in exposed conditions.
Two presenters from the Netherlands, Wilco De Bruijne, a consultant and Roef Mulder who works for the regional government offered information on monitoring and evaluation after construction on the Fish Migration River in the Province of Fryslan, The Netherlands.
Elizabeth Freiday is employed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, based in her field office in New Jersey. She was enthusiastic about her work with private land owners, educating them about their creeks and streams and how to appropriately care for them.
Paul Meeks, an exhibitor with Worthington Products, described their work in 55 countries as they guide fish to safe passages through collectors or bypass dams.