Science Says That Dredging Is Fish-Friendly

If you’ve ever wondered how dredging affects fish and other aquatic wildlife, you can now put your mind at ease. Scientists at the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) have found that suction dredge mining does no harm to fish. Not only that, but it may help to improve their habitat.

The two scientists reporting, Claudia Wise and Joseph Green, have done in-depth research in this area and have come to the conclusion that no evidence exists that dredging harms fish. Wildlife activists have made claims over the years that dredging deteriorates aquatic habitats. They’ve found that it actually helps the habitat of wild salmon and other fish by improving streams and rivers.

In a recent interview, Wise stated, “Any negative effects of suction dredging on fish or fish habitat are insignificant. The benefits definitely outweigh any of the negative effects in any of the studies I’ve ever seen.”

Nearly every study conducted on the impact of suction dredging on fish and their habitats have shown that dredging’s negative impact is less than significant.

Dredging helps to improve fish environments by creating pockets in streams and riverbeds. These pockets provide a place for fish to spawn where naturally available gravel is limited. Without dredging, the bottoms of streams and rivers remain compacted, and the fish have limited places to spawn.

Suction dredging creates small pockets, also called manmade refugia, where fish can then spawn. One study found that after year of dredging a river full of salmon, the river was full of more fish since it became an attractive place for the fish to spawn.

Just one nest of salmon eggs can produce thousands of salmon. Just a small improvement in the attractiveness of riverbeds as spawning areas can dramatically improve a river’s fish population. Wise and Green both agree that much of the media coverage about dredging being bad for fish has been one-sided.

With this in mind, you can rent dredging equipment Montgomery County TX with peace of mind that you wont harm nearby fish habitats. These facts are backed by scientific evidence, and they show that controlled dredging done outside of spawning season can improve the fish population of a river within a few years.

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