My past work with Prof. John Reynolds at Simon Fraser University, looked at the influence Pacific salmon have on aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. We collated evidence about the relationships between Pacific salmon and a diverse range of ecosystem components, such as the diversity and abundance of insects, birds and plants.

We were interested in how many salmon were required in a stream before the effects of nutrient addition and bioturbation plateaued. This research has implications for ecosystem-based fisheries management, suggesting the need to consider not only the salmon populations, but also the flow-on effects to stream and forest ecosystems.

Fig. 2: Number of relationships describing the density or abundance of salmon and other ecosystem components included in the analysis, across ecosystem attributes or processes and taxonomic group (n = 172). Walsh et al. Ecology 2020

Fig. 4: Predicted relationships between relative δ15N and salmon density across taxonomic groups and units of salmon density or abundance, based on “best” models for each data set. Null models were best models for nine stream invertebrate relationships, two plant relationships, two freshwater fish relationships, one algae/periphyton relationship, and one sediment relationship, and are not included here. Walsh et al. Ecology 2020

Relevant publication

Walsh JC, Pendray JE, Godwin SC, Artelle KA, Kindsvater HK, Field RD, Harding JN, Swain NR, Reynolds JD. 2020. Relationships between Pacific salmon and aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems: implications for ecosystem-based management. Ecology 101:1–16.