The Fangue and Rypel Labs (UC Davis) in collaboration with the Yurok Tribe and Dr. Bartholomew's lab (OSU Microbiology) are studying the effects of C. shasta infection on outmigration success of chinook salmon.
As anadromous fish, chinook transition from fresh to saltwater where they undergo smoltification, i.e., physiological changes meant to help them cope with the shifts in their environment. Smoltification is a vital but energy costly change that can be hampered by environmental stress. One stressor of great concern is the parasite, Ceratonova shasta. In recent years, increasing river water temperatures and lower flows have resulted in higher parasite loads and stress in the fish leading to large fish dieoffs in the Klamath River.
Funded by a California Seagrant, this project simulates multiple stressors in the lab and using survivability, physiological and genetic parameters; will provide us with an indicator of migration success in different chinook stocks and river systems.