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Project Overview

Associated Projects

Adult Salmon Research

Spawning Distribution
Redd Characteristics
Creel survey
Carcass Counts
Hatchery Counts

Juvenile Salmon Research

Habitat Preference

Migration Research

Migration Timing


This project is providing important information about the wild production of Chinook salmon in the Salmon River.

Other projects conducted around the Basin by agencies, universites and other partners are documenting wild reproduction of salmon and trout, and providing managers with other scientific knowledge needed to effectively manage this highly-valued diverse fishery.


Natural Reproduction of Chinook Salmon in the Salmon River, NY

Project Investigators

Neil Ringler, SUNY ESF. Principal Investigator
Neil is Distinguished Teaching Professor and Chair of the Faculty of Environmental and Forest Biology. He and his graduate students have been studying salmon and trout in New York streams for nearly 30 years. His other research interests include behavioral feeding ecology, fish communities in perturbed aquatic ecosystems, and stream ecology.
Lars Rudstam, Cornell Univ., Assoc. Investigator
Lars is Assistant Director of Cornell Biological Station on Oneida Lake and Associate Professor at Cornell University. Lars is an expert in using acoustics for monitoring the spatial distribution of fish populations. His other current research examines (i) long-term dynamics of Oneida Lake fish and fisheries including effects of cormorants and zebra mussels, (ii) dynamics of interacting fish populations and importance of cannibalism, (iii) role of predatory invertebrates (mysis, spiny water flea) in Lake Ontario, and (iv) development of acoustic methods to study spatial distributions of aquatic organisms.
Staff & Students  

Michael Connerton, Post Doc, SUNY ESF
Michael is studying migration timing and abundance of adult and smolts using hydroacoustics and other techniques. Michael's other research interests include spatial ecology of stream benthic and fish production, periphyton, and Altantic salmon restoration and ecology. He also currrently works for the Great Lakes Research Consortium Consortium

Dustin Everitt, Sea Grant Scholar, SUNY ESF
Dustin is studying the distribution of adult spawning locations, the physical characeristics of salmon redds, and the relationship between location and spawning success of salmon. Dustin comes to the project from Lake Superior State University where he received his B.S.. There he also worked on studying hybridization between Chinook salmon and Pink salmon in northern Lake Huron.


  Mary Penny-Sabia, MS Grad. Assistant, SUNY ESF
Mary is studying the distribution and abundance of salmon smolts, and determining whether there are diel and seasonal shifts in habitat preference. She is a native to Pulaski where she grew up fishing on the River, and currently works for NYDEC as a Salmon River Steward.

Jim Johnson, U.S. Geological Survey
Jim is the Branch Chief of the USGS Tunison Laboratory of Aquatic Sciences in Cortland. Ironically, Jim was the first to document natural reproduction in the tributaries of the Salmon River when he was a graduate student with Neil Ringler at ESF in the late 1970's. After a decade working on insects and salmon out west and shad in the Suquehanna, Jim returned to studying Tug Hill streams in 1995. Current projects include habitat parititioning of migratory salmonines in tributaries, double crested cormorants, lake sturgeon and restoration ecology.

Daniel Bishop, NYDEC
Dan is the Regional Fisheries Manager with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. He is responsible for managing fisheries in Region 7 including the southeastern Lake Ontario salmon fishery. For this project, Dan is providing analysis of creel data, and hatchery statistics.


Fran Verdoliva, NYDEC
Fran is the Salmon River Program Coordinator for New York DEC. Among other things, Fran supervises the Steward and public outreach programs at the Hatchery. He is an avid fly fisherman, author and designer of several original flies. Fran wrote an excellent article about the history of the Salmon River.

The project is sponsored by New York Sea Grant, with matching contributions by NYSDEC, and SUNY ESF.

The project also wishes to thank the following local organizations for their assistance with the project:

Lighthouse Marina

Douglaston Salmon Run


Summer '04:
Alex Studdert. Chris Reddy, Kevin Stager, Pete Austerman

Fall '04
Alex Studdert, Chris Nack, Pete Malaty


Page last modified October 30, 2015

Project Cooperators

New York
Department of Environmental Conservation

Project funded by New York Sea Grant