This project aims to provide a better understanding of how land and vegetation in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta interact with river flow and tides to create habitat favored by native fishes. Scientists, engineers and resource managers can then use this information to identify areas and conditions of high potential for habitat improvement throughout the Delta.
The investigation focuses on regions in the north Delta where fish surveys have shown relatively high populations of native fishes - regions including Suisun Marsh, the flooded Sherman Island and the Cache and Lindsey sloughs. The areas together form an arc, inspiring the project name "North Delta Arc of Native Fishes."
Research questions include:
- How do native fishes use habitat on slough margins and adjacent floodplains?
- Do regional food webs support endangered aquatic species such as delta smelt?
- How do small sloughs support migratory species such as splittail and salmon?
- Are some restored or artificial habitats better for native fishes than others?