Satellites track the tiny silver fish hugely important to marine life

 By Rochelle Baker  Local Journalism Initiative Reporter A new scientific endeavour has taken to the sky using high-tech drones and satellite images to understand better the annual spring herring spawn vital to salmon and wildlife on the West Coast. Between February and March each year, frigid ocean waters transform to a milky tropical-looking turquoise green when male herring release milt to fertilize the countless eggs deposited by females on eelgrass, kelp and seaweed fringing coastal shores. Unpredictable and dramatic, the small silver fishes’ spawning event is large and best monitored from great heights, said Loic Dallaire, a researcher with the SPECTRAL Remote Sensing Laboratory at the University of Victoria. “It’s one of the very few animal formations that we can see from space, excluding human developments and towns,” Dallaire said….

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