We compared the impacts of stocking age-0 Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) at high and low densities, and no stocking on abundance and growth of age-0 rainbow trout (Oncorhyncus mykiss) in Barnum House Creek, Ontario during 1993 to 2005. A similar stream, Shelter Valley Creek, was chosen as an appropriate reference stream where age-0 Atlantic salmon were not stocked. The catches of age-0 rainbow trout in Barnum House and the reference stream were highly correlated (r = 0.96) during years when no stocking occurred; however, this relationship did not persist in years when Atlantic salmon were stocked. The catch of age-0 rainbow trout in Barnum House Creek was significantly lower under both high (P = 0.00026) and low (P = 0.011) density Atlantic salmon stocking treatments compared with the no stocking treatment. The catches of age-0 rainbow trout and age-0 Atlantic salmon were negatively correlated in Barnum House Creek (r = −0.63). The length of age-0 rainbow trout in Barnum House Creek was depressed significantly (P = 0.004), under the high intensity Atlantic salmon stocking treatment, but not under the low intensity treatment (P = 0.20). In contrast, the length of age-0 rainbow trout in Shelter Valley Creek was unchanged over the same period. Restoration stocking of Atlantic salmon in Lake Ontario tributaries may impact rainbow trout abundance and growth.
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Vol. 34 • No. 3