Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Hudson River Fish at Risk
Many Hudson River fish species are in serious long-term decline and at risk of collapse if quick and aggressive measures are not taken. Of the thirteen key fish species studied in Riverkeeper’s Pisces Report, ten have declined in abundance since the 1980s: shad, tomcod, bay anchovy, alewife, blueback herring, rainbow smelt, hogchoker, white catfish, weakfish and white perch. Only three species — striped bass, bluefish and spottail shiner — have increased in abundance, mostly due to regulations and circumstantial changes that favor them. Contrary to public perception, this report shows an increasingly unstable ecosystem in the Hudson.
Riverkeeper’s Hudson Fisheries Defense Campaign is aimed at halting the decline of Hudson River’s signature fish species and restoring their numbers to sustainable levels. The campaign will address the many negative impacts on the health of the fish including: habitat loss and degradation, sewage overflows, power plant fishkills, invasive species, ocean bycatch and overfishing.
The Hudson Ecosystem
The Hudson River is not your typical river. In fact, most of the Hudson is actually a tidal estuary where salt water from the ocean combines with freshwater from northern tributaries. This “brackish”, or mixing, water extends from the mouth of the Hudson to the Federal Dam in Troy, NY, approximately 153 miles. The salt front of the estuary, where the freshwater runoff meets the saline water, may range from the Tappan Zee Bridge/Yonkers in the spring to Newburgh Bay/Poughkeepsie in the late summer or during droughts. Because the Hudson River is a tidal estuary, meaning it ebbs and flows with the ocean tide, it supports a biologically rich environment; making it an important ecosystem for various species of aquatic life. For many key species, it provides critical habitats and essential spawning and breeding grounds.

The Facts
Hudson River Fish in Peril – The Pisces Report
Threats to Hudson River Fish
Hudson River Power Plant Fish Kills
Modern Cooling Technologies Protect Fish
History of Power Plants on the Hudson: Hudson River Settlement Agreement


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