• Fish;
  • marine mammals;
  • turbine mortality;
  • tidal power;
  • Bay of Fundy;
  • Severn Estuary

Macrotidal estuaries of the inner Bay of Fundy are utilized by large numbers of migratory fishes, particularly dogfish, sturgeon, herring, shad, Atlantic salmon and striped bass as well as by other migratory marine animals, many of which have large body sizes (squid, Lamnid sharks, seals and whales). Tagging experiments indicate the fishes originate from stocks derived over the entire North American Atlantic coast from Florida to Labrador. Population estimates suggest up to 2.0 times 106adult American shad (Alosa sapidissima) migrate through an individual embayment each year. These migrations are an integral part of the life history of the respective species and appear to be controlled in part by the near shore movements of ocean currents. In other regions of the world similar macrotidal estuaries exist (Cook Inlet, Alaska; Severn Estuary, U.K.) and they, like the Bay of Fundy, are linked in continuum to the local ocean currents. We propose that marine animals utilize all these regions in a manner similar to the Bay of Fundy estuaries and properly designed surveys will reveal their presence. Fish passage studies utilizing the Annapolis estuary low-head, tidal turbine on the Bay of Fundy have shown that turbine related mortality of 20–80% per passage occurs depending on fish species, fish size and the efficiency of turbine operation. We suggest that introduction of tidal turbines into open ocean current systems will cause widespread impact on marine populations resulting in significant declines in abundance.