Skip to main content
Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2007

Experimental field study on the migratory behaviour of glass eels (Anguilla anguilla) at the interface of fresh and salt water

Bult TP, Dekker W


European eels (Anguilla anguilla) in the glass eel phase migrate using ocean currents and selective tidal stream transport. Conventional fish ladders installed at the interface of marine and fresh water, however, require the fish to swim upstream actively. We question the efficiency of these fish ladders for glass eel immigration, and propose a simple siphon over migration barriers, restoring the original selective tidal stream transport. A conventional trap and our siphon were tested concurrently at two sluice complexes in The Netherlands (Tholen, Nieuwe Statenzijl) in spring 2005. In all but one case, the siphon caught more glass eels than the trap, as well as more sticklebacks and other species. Clearly, the natural immigration process can be restored fairly easily and at low cost and with low intrusion levels of salt. Follow-up studies should focus on optimization, and the effect of a passage on the hinterland stock.

Published in

ICES Journal of Marine Science
2007, volume: 64, number: 7, pages: 1396-1401

Authors' information

Bult, Tammo P.
IMARES, Wageningen UR
IMARES, Wageningen UR

UKÄ Subject classification

Fish and Aquacultural Science

Publication Identifiers


URI (permanent link to this page)