Effect of temperature & flow on seasonal &diel movement of brook trout

Brook trout internal tagging and combined mobile and fixed radio tracking study where 50 trout in 5 streams (10 trout per stream) will be collected using a backpack electrofisher and fitted with surgically implanted radio and temperature tags. There will be two groups of trout each implanted with a different type of tag; the project will begin in June 2024 and will end in August 2024 for the first group and October 2024 for the second group. This position can therefore be extended into the Fall 2024 semester. Throughout the full 24-hour day, mobile tracking events will take place where the tagged trout will be tracked on foot with handheld antennas through the small streams in western Massachusetts. There will be two teams who switch weekly between being day team and night team, but volunteers can choose to join in or opt out of night sampling. The tagged trout will be recollected at the end of the sampling season again using a backpack electrofisher and sacrificed to recollect the tags. Other tasks will involve environmental assessments, including taking flow, temperature, and conductivity measurements.

Name of research group, project, or lab
USGS Silvio O. Conte Research Laboratory with Dr. Ben Letcher and Dr. Jenn Fair
Why participate in this opportunity?
This project will provide an opportunity to gain substantial field experience, including experience in mobile and fixed radio telemetry, electrofishing, fish surgical procedures, and hydrology. 

Logistics Information:
Subject Category
Animal Behavior
Student ranks applicable
Student qualifications

No previous experience necessary, training will be provided. 
Students must be able to work outside in the field for 4-6 hours at a time during the summer. 
Ability to handle fish kindly and safely.


Time commitment
5-7 h/wk
8-10 h/wk
11-14 h/wk
15+ h/wk
Position Types and Compensation
Research - Ind. Study Credit
Research - Volunteer
Number of openings
Techniques learned

Transect flow measurements, backpack electrofishing. animal handling, fish surgical procedures, radio telemetry techniques.



Project start
June 1, 2024
Contact Information:
Josie Pilchik
Graduate Student
Name of project director or principal investigator
Jennifer Fair
Email address of project director or principal investigator
6 sp. | 9 appl.
5-7 h/wk (+3)
5-7 h/wk8-10 h/wk11-14 h/wk15+ h/wk
Project categories
Animal Behavior (+1)
Animal BehaviorEcology