Journal of comparative physiology

, Volume 147, Issue 4, pp 547-552

First online:

The use of celestial and magnetic cues by orienting sockeye salmon smolts

  • Thomas P. QuinnAffiliated withSchool of Fisheries WH-10, University of WashingtonDepartment of Fisheries and Oceans, Pacific Biological Station
  • , Ernest L. BrannonAffiliated withSchool of Fisheries WH-10, University of Washington

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


  1. 1.

    Yearling sockeye salmon (smolts),Oncorhynchus nerka, trapped at the outlet of Babine Lake, Canada, on their way from the lake downstream to the ocean were tested in round orientation tanks. With a view of the sky, the smolts oriented towards the lake's outlet in the normal magnetic field (Fig. 3) and in a field rotated 90 ° counterclockwise (Fig. 4).

  2. 2.

    Under opaque covers, the smolts displayed a bimodal distribution. In the normal magnetic field, they oriented towards or away from the lake's outlet (Fig. 5). In the altered field, the axis of the distribution was rotated 56 ° away from the axis in the normal field (Fig. 6).