To quantify fine-scale Kootenai River white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) staging and spawning habitat selection and preference within a recently restored reach of the Kootenai River, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, integrated acoustic telemetry data with two-dimensional hydraulic model simulations within a 1.5-kilometer reach of the Kootenai River near Bonners Ferry, northern Idaho. Twenty-seven individual Kootenai River white sturgeon were detected in the study reach during May 6–June 30, 2017. The largest concentration of fish positions occurred near the edge of the gravel bar adjacent to the right bank pool-forming structure and additional concentrations of fish positions occurred near two recently constructed rock substrate clusters. The difference in preferred and available depth distributions quantifies that Kootenai River white sturgeon generally preferred depths of 7–11.5 meters, deeper than the most frequently available depths. About 71 percent of the detections occurred within the lower one-third of the water column, placing Kootenai River white sturgeon at or near the channel bed. The difference in available and preferred water velocities indicated that Kootenai River white sturgeon generally preferred a wide range of velocities from 0.0 to 1.0 meters per second, and generally preferred velocities that were less than the most frequently occurring available velocities. Kootenai River white sturgeon generally preferred the downstream part of the study area where water velocities were less than those in the upstream part. This study concludes that Kootenai River white sturgeon generally avoided shallow areas with increased velocities and generally favored deep areas with lower velocities near recently constructed restoration structures.
|Title||Kootenai River white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) fine-scale habitat selection and preference, Kootenai River near Bonners Ferry, Idaho, 2017|
|Authors||Ryan L. Fosness, Taylor J. Dudunake, Richard R. McDonald, Ryan S. Hardy, Shawn Young, Susan Ireland, Gregory C. Hoffman|
|Publication Subtype||USGS Numbered Series|
|Series Title||Scientific Investigations Report|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||Idaho Water Science Center|