Recruitment of forage fish species in a boreal fjord

Research summary

This project aims to use two forage fish species in the Saguenay Fjord, rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax) and capelin (Mallotus villosus), as model species for studying the growth and mortality of young fish life stages.

Recent studies have tested the paradigm that rapid growth within a larval cohort always leads to high survival. Relying on frequent sampling that targets the same cohort during its first year of life, the project will investigate the characteristics of surviving larvae and juveniles. Daily growth can be traced through analyzing the microstructure of otoliths, enabling the inference of the extent to which recruitment is established and identifying at which life stages mortality may be related to growth. Our results are expected to provide an important contribution to the overall understanding of the growth–survival paradigm in fisheries science.

This project is co-directed by Dominique Robert (UQAR-ISMER).


This project was the subject of a field photo essay by the Boreal Research Centre (Centre de recherche sur la boréalie – CREB).



Henrique Amato Peres

Ph.D. candidate in Biology at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Pascal Sirois

Professor, Department of Fundamental Sciences, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Director of the Chair for Research on Exploited Aquatic Species