Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 6780
Title: Observations on aggressiveness in sockeye salmon smolts
Author: H William Newman
Publication Year: 1959
Journal: Copeia
Volume: 1
Pages: 76

Juvenile sockeye salmon are usually strongly schooling fish.  However, during laboratory observations on the behavior of juvenile salmon, aggressiveness in sockeye smolts was noted on several occasions.  Hoar (1954) observed this too, stating that nipping by sockeye smolts does not have the vicious appearance of coho nipping and never elicits a retaliation.  In the Fish Behavior Laboratory, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Seattle, Washington, we conducted tests which confirm this observation and suggest that this behavior is defense of territory.