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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Model of dispersal of fry of Sockeye Salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in Babine Lake Simms, Steven Eric


A computer simulation model was written to mimic the natural movement of salmon fry in Babine Lake, B.C.. Simulated distributions of fry were compared with field observations taken in 3 sampling periods during the summer and fall in 1967, 1968, 1971, and 1972, in order to evaluate the model's validity. Simulated distributions of fry, when random and heavily-biased movements were combined, were in reasonable accord with naturally observed distributions of fry in periods 1 and 2. In period 3 the model successfully produced a distribution similar to that naturally observed when the fry were programmed to undergo only random movement. Factors which might account for the various distributions of fry in different periods include the effects of current and innate behavioral responses of the fry to limnological conditions. In constructing my model, I assumed that fry travelled at speeds observed in the laboratory in still water. The model of fry dispersal in Babine Lake could be improved as more information is collected on the limnology of the lake and on fry behavior. In addition, the model has much generality and the techniques used may be applied to the dispersal of other organisms and to other lakes.

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