Cornwall ON – The Discovery Channel’s “Daily Planet” will run a story tonight on the migration of the American eel and its climb up the improved eel ladder at the R. H. Saunders dam in Cornwall, Ontario.
The show’s producer, Jeffrey Berman, contacted local videographer, Kevin Lamoureux of KAV Productions to film the Cornwall segment.
The local footage includes an interview with biologist, Ron Threader and an explanation of how the eel ladder works to assist the eels in bypassing the hydroelectric dam in their journey up the St. Lawrence River to Lake Ontario.
Check out the broadcast tonight at 7 pm, 11 pm or tomorrow at 9 am on The Discovery Channel,
(TDC channel 42 on cable or DISC 520 on satalite). If you miss the broadcast, find the Oct. 14
episode on line at: http://www.discoverychannel.ca/showpage.aspx?sid=13287
The Importance of the American Eel
• The American eel is an important part of the diversity of life in Lake Ontario and a valuable indicator of the health of the ecosystem. As a top predator, eels help to keep other fish species in balance, including invasive species such as goby.
• Eels were abundant in the upper St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario since at least the mid-1600s. During the 1980s and early 1990s, the American eel was one of the top three species in commercial value for Ontario’s fishing industry.
• In recent decades, the number of young American eels entering the upper St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario has declined dramatically. The species appears to be in decline around the globe.
Biologist Ron Threader being interviewed by videograper Kevin Lamoureux at the RH Saunders dam.
Life Cycle of the American Eel
• American eel are found in coastal freshwater and marine waters stretching from Greenland along the east coast of North American to northern South America. Eels are found in Ontario in the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario, and inland lakes and rivers.
• All American eel are part of the single breeding population that spawns in only one place in the world – the Sargasso Sea in the Atlantic Ocean. From there, young eels drift with ocean currents and then migrate inland into rivers, lakes and streams. Some eels travel as much as 6,000 kilometres over many years.
• The eels feed and mature in freshwater for 10 to 25 years before migrating back to the Sargasso Sea, where they spawn and die.
A mature American eel
or watch his video below!