View Full Version : Electro Survey

09-26-2005, 02:08 PM
This is late, but I've been busy.

I volunteered to help the forest service on a electro-fishing survey on the north slope of the Uinta's. I spend a good amount of time on the north slope and I figured I'd see what kind of fish and fish numbers showed up, plus it sounded like fun and I'd be helping in a cause that would help me out.

I met up with the base camp located on the Blacks Fork River around 9:00 pm on Tues evening. The next morning we were divided up into two groups. 5 would go up Blacks Fork Middle Fork, and 3 would go up Middle Fork of Smiths Fork. I was elected to go up MFSF since I had fresh legs. The sample site was 6.5 miles up, I was the lucky one to carry up the battery pack, it weighs around 30 lbs. We were on the trail by 8 oclock and made our destination by 11.

We began by marking off a 100 meter stretch for our sample area. It was then time to shock. One guy headed up the middle with the battery pack, two others flollowed on each side with nets. Due to the purity of the water we had to turn up the shocker 900 volts, 400 is normal. The shocker will cover about a 5' radius. It's quite interesting watching fish just appear, when the get shocked they turn belly up and float.

On the first pass we collected mostly brook trout, then white fish, and one cutthroat. All fish are measured, weighed, and which species recorded. The biggest fish was only about 10 inches. A second pass is made to try and get the best sampling possible. After the shocking a few more things are recorded like river bottom structure, water speed, and temp.

The second day we were all tired from such a long hike we decided to take a sampling at the trail head on Smiths Fork. The process was exactly the same. This time brook trout were dominant, then sculpin, white fish, and one rainbow. No cutthroat were found.

I had a great time and would do it again. This project was severely under funded and relied alot on volunteers. They only had 2 fisherman volunteer along with 5-6 dedicated hunters.

I didn't get any pics of the first day, but here are some from the second.

09-26-2005, 06:07 PM
So, they just go belly up? How long does it take for them to "come back"?

09-26-2005, 10:09 PM
Very cool report. Thanks a lot. I would love to help out if you ever do it in the future. Do you have any contact info for the people in charge?

09-27-2005, 06:12 AM
They go belly up, but it doesn't take long for them to come back around. I didn't witness any fish deaths, but I wouldn't be suprised if a few didn't make it.

Big Ben, Paul Cowly is the contact. His email is pcowley@fs.fed.us. I'm sure they aren't doind anymore work this year, but he could probably give you an idea for next year. Keep in mind this was done by the forest service, the DWR does similar projects, you could give them a call also.