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Habitat Trouble for American Eel in Northeastern States

from the National Fish Habitat Partnership's 2015 Through a Fish's Eye Report


Available data for the American Eel (Anguilla rostrata) indicate that, overall, there have been declines in recruitment, population, and escapement during three generations (36 years). A recent report indicated that barriers to migration (dams and weirs), passage through turbines at hydropower dams, habitat degradation or loss, and overharvest were likely the greatest threats by humans across the species’ range. Although eels are able to ascend many smaller barriers, recent studies have documented a tenfold reduction in eel density above each potentially passable barrier. For example, the number of juvenile eels migrating to Lake Ontario passing over hydropower dams fell from 935,000 in 1985 to approximately 8,000 in 1993 and, finally, [...]


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The U.S Geological Survey (USGS) is partnering with the National Fish Habitat Partnership (NFHP) to produce the 2015 report entitled, "Through a Fish's Eye: The Status of Fish Habitats in the United States 2015". The information contained within this item is a product of NFHP. The Bureau is neither responsible nor liable for the accuracy or the use of the scientific content within this item. This content is considered preliminary pending subsequent review and approval.


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