Excerpt from Disappearance of Dead Pink Salmon Eggs and Larvae From Sashin Creek, Baranof Island, Alaska
Creek, the results of other studies suggest that the redd construction activities by female salmon cause the removal of organic detritus such as egg fragments from their nests. Mcneil and Ahnell (1964) and Semko (1954) found that spawning salmon removed signifi cant volumes of fine materials from spawning beds, and they gave evidence that the materials removed included much of the organic detritus present in the streambed at the time of spawn ing. However, the capability of a population of spawning adults to cleanse a spawning bed of fouling organic matter is unquestionably di rectly related to the density of females spawn ing. Small populations (similar to the one observed in Sashin Creek during 1962) would, therefore, be expected to remove only a small fraction of the organic detritus present; where as large populations could conceivably remove nearly all organic matter in the streambed. Ricker (1962) was cognizant of this relation ship when he pointed out that residual decay ing eggs could possibly have an adverse effect on a subsequent brood year of small size. Additional study is needed to establish more clearly relations among density of spawning adults, conditioning of spawning beds, and survival of eggs and larvae.integrate within 12 months of their time of death.
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