The Chinese sturgeon, Acipenser sinensis, is an anadromous species that spawns in the Yangtze River and Pearl River of China. Its population has declined dramatically since the construction of the Gezhouba Dam (GD) in 1981 and then with the impoundment of the Three Gorges Dam (TGD) upstream of the GD in 2003. This paper presents a quantitative method based on the instream flow incremental method to explore the relationship between the fish spawning habitat and the operations of the GD and TGD, aiming to find a solution for conservation of the species. A two-dimensional hydrodynamic model was built with the River2D to simulate the hydraulic behaviour of the stream below the GD. Habitat suitability index was determined by the biological data of the fish collected in the field. The two parts were then integrated through a geographical information system developed via ArcGIS to outline the fish habitat area variation with flows. The decision support system is applied to set up a habitat time series for validating the assumption that more habitats have the potential to support more fish. The fish habitat results for alternative instream flow schemes are then compared with one another for defining the optimal flow requirements and evaluating effects of reservoir operation alternatives in order to improve the operation management for the GD and TGD projects. The results show that the optimal flow for spawning of the fish is about 7000-13000m(3)/s and the optimal inlets combination is where the inflow comes from two power plants. Copyright (C) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Ban, X.; Du, Y.; Liu, H. Z.; Ling, F..APPLYING INSTREAM FLOW INCREMENTAL METHOD FOR THE SPAWNING HABITAT PROTECTION OF CHINESE STURGEON (Acipenser sinensis),RIVER RESEARCH AND APPLICATIONS,2011,27(1):87-98