Our 2014 American eel team has been busy over the last month preparing for our upcoming field season! As mentioned in our previous post, one of our goals this season was to capture juvenile eels using traps. Trapping these individuals allows us to further our understanding of the American eel population in the Ottawa River. With each individual, we will take measurement data (length, weight) as well as implant each individual with a small tag, a PIT (passive integrated transponder) tag which when detected with a specialized PIT reader can display each tag’s unique code – similar to microchips that are implanted in cats and dogs!
Our team decided to make our eel traps or “pots” in house from PVC coated steel meshing – this design is very similar to a conventional minnow trap, a cylinder with a funnel, make from plastic gardening mesh on one end and the other end being closed.
We’ve taken some photos to document the progression of our trap making and deployment!
We now have our traps set in two locations; near Arnprior around Chats Dam and near Chaudière Falls, in Ottawa. We will continue to monitor these traps throughout the summer in hopes of catching some juvenile eels!