Seining, Electrofishing, and Relocation Activities

All seining, electrofishing, and relocation activities shall be performed by a qualified biologist. All qualified biologists need to be experienced in fish identification, have experience with fish removals and relocations and have an understanding of the water quality needs of fish. The qualified biologist will need to submit their qualifications to the NOAA RC for approval prior to fish relocation activities. The qualified biologist shall capture and relocate listed species prior to construction of the water diversion structures (e.g., cofferdams). The qualified biologist shall note the number of listed species observed in the affected area, the number and species of fish relocated, where they were relocated to, and the date and time of collection and relocation. The qualified biologist will adhere to the following requirements for capture and transport of listed fish species:
o At some sites with low habitat complexity, herding fish with a single seine pass before the block net is installed can help reduce the number of fish that must be handled.
o Determine the most efficient means for capturing fish (e.g., seining, dip netting, trapping, and electrofishing). Complex stream habitat generally requires the use of electrofishing equipment, whereas in outlet pools, fish may be concentrated by pumping-down the pool and then seining or dip netting fish.
o NOAA RC (staff identified as project contact) shall be notified one week prior to capture and relocation of listed fish to provide the NOAA RC an opportunity to monitor the operation.
o In streams with high water temperature, perform relocation activities during morning periods, when water is coolest.
o Prior to capturing fish, determine the most appropriate release location(s). Consider the following when selecting release site(s): Similar water temperature as capture location, ample habitat for captured fish, low likelihood of fish reentering work site or becoming impinged on exclusion net or screen.
o All electrofishing will be conducted according to NMFS Guidelines for Electrofishing Waters Containing Salmonids listed under the Endangered Species Act (2000) and whenever possible electrofishing should be performed in the early morning.
o Water temperature, dissolved oxygen, and conductivity shall be recorded in an electrofishing log book, along with electrofishing settings