Ecohydraulics, Fish and Hydropower Research

A brief introduction to my career studying freshwater ecosystems, ecohydraulics, hydropower and fish across the globe (literally!)

Hi, and welcome! This is my personal website where you can find information about my career path researching hydropower and fish issues globally. If you are interested in ecohydraulics research applied to the hydropower and fish nexus, we also publish interesting news about these topics.           

 I am Luiz Gustavo Martins da Silva, a.k.a Luiz Silva. Since September 2020 I have joined the group of Prof. Roman Stocker (The Environmental Microfluidics Group), working as a senior scientist. The group is part of the Institute of Environmental Enginnering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering, ETH-Zürich, in Switzerland.

My journey through freshwater ecosystems and fish started in 1998 as a bachelor student of Biological Sciences at the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, Brazil. I've been always fascinated by rivers, streams, lakes, and fish. Then I learned about the impacts and interaction of hydropower with these systems and was immediately dragged by a growing research interest in this field.

In 2004, I completed my Master degree in the Vertebrate Zoology also at PUC-Minas, where I studied the migratory behaviour of two Neotropical fish species at the Rio Grande, Minas Gerais state, Brazil, in an area affected by a cascade of hydropower plants. As a result of this study we observed fish moving through the turbines of a hydropower dam in the study area, which led me to my doctoral project.

In 2010, I obtained my PhD in Mechanical Engineering at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil. During my PhD I studied behavioural barriers to deter fish from moving into harmful areas in the vicinity of hydropower plants (e.g. turbines and spillways). My international career started during this time, with a placement as a visiting scholar at the US Bureau of Reclamation, Research and Development Office (within the former Ecology group). 

Upon completion of my PhD I obtained a position at the Federal University of São João del-Rei, Brazil, where I worked as a Professor of Environmental Management and Impact Assessment from 2010 to 2020. During that time, I developed a research group specialised in assessing fish mortality at hydropower plants with several funded projects aimed at investigating barotrauma in fish as a result of exposure to rapid decompression during passage through turbines or spillways.

In 2016, I accepted  an offer for a placement as Visiting Academic at the Institute of Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Australia, where I stayed until February 2020. Whilst in Australia, I had the opportunity to work and experience freshwater and fish research challenges in the Murray-Darling Basin working closely with Prof. Lee Baumgartner.

I have now embarked on a new challenge focused on contributing to research on hydropower and fish issues in Switzerland, whilst maintaining and contributing to that topic globally. Furthermore, I'm responsible for the establishment of the Research Group in Ecohydraulics within the Stocker Lab, where broader ecohydraulics topics are also part of our interest.

Are you interested in these topics? Did I catch your attention? Follow this space for updates, publications, news and open positions to join our efforts.

  • Career summary
    1. 2020 – Ongoing  Senior Scientist and Lecturer - Ecohydraulics, ETH-Zurich, Stocker Lab, Institute for Environmental Engineering (IfU), Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering (D-BAUG), Zurich, Switzerland;
    2. 2010 – 2020        Associate Professor, Federal University of São João Del-Rei, Department of Technologies in Civil Engineering, Computation and Humanities, Ouro Branco, MG, Brazil.
    3. 2017 – 2019        Senior Freshwater Fish Ecologist, Charles Sturt University, Institute for Land, Water and Society, Albury, New South Wales, Australia; Sessional lecturer, School of Environmental Sciences, Charles Sturt University; Albury, New South Wales, Australia;
    4. 2016 – 2017        Visiting Academic (Post-doctoral level), Charles Sturt University, Institute for Land, Water and Society, Albury, New South Wales, Australia;
    5. 2009 – 2010        Lecturer, Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, Institute of Biological Sciences, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil;
    6. 2007 – 2008        Visiting Scholar, PhD Studentship, US Bureau of Reclamation, Ecology Group, Denver, Colorado, USA
    7. 2005 – 2010        PhD Studentship, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Post-graduate Program in Mechanical Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil;
    8. 2005 – 2010      Lecturer, University of Belo Horizonte – UNI-BH, Department of Biological Sciences and Health, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil;
    9. 2004 – 2010      Director, Biotec Environmental Solutions Ltd, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

Publications

Here you can find an up to date list of my publications, from peer-reviewed scientific manuscripts to conference proceedings.     

  • Peer-reviewed articles
  1. Silva, F. D. O., E. Kalapothakis, L. G. M. Silva & F. M. Pelicice, 2021. The sum of multiple human stressors and weak management as a threat for migratory fish. Biological Conservation 264:109392 doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2021.109392.
  2. Jager, H. I., J. W. Long, R. L. Malison, B. P. Murphy, A. Rust, L. G. M. Silva, R. Sollmann, Z. L. Steel, M. D. Bowen, J. B. Dunham, J. L. Ebersole & R. L. Flitcroft, 2021. Resilience of terrestrial and aquatic fauna to historical and future wildfire regimes in western North America. Ecology and Evolution doi:10.1002/ece3.8026.
  3. Jones, P. E., J. S. Tummers, S. M. Galib, D. J. Woodford, J. B. Hume, L. G. M. Silva, R. R. Braga, C. Garcia de Leaniz, J. R. S. Vitule, J. E. Herder & M. C. Lucas, 2021. The Use of Barriers to Limit the Spread of Aquatic Invasive Animal Species: A Global Review. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 9 doi:10.3389/fevo.2021.611631.
  4. Bambrilla, E.M.; Silva, L.G.M.; Baumgartner, L.J.; Bialetzki, A.; Nogueira, M.G. In press. Dispersal of fish eggs and larvae in a cascade of small hydropower plants with fish ladders. Hydrobiologia, DOI: 10.1007/s10750-020-04425-5
  5. Doyle, K. E., N. Ning, L. G. M. Silva, E. M. Brambilla, C. A. Boys, Z. D. Deng, T. Fu, J. A. du Preez, W. Robinson & L. J. Baumgartner, 2020. Gambusia holbrooki Survive Shear Stress, Pressurization and Avoid Blade Strike in a Simulated Pumped Hydroelectric Scheme. Frontiers in Environmental Science 8 doi:10.3389/fenvs.2020.563654.
  6. Silva, L.G.M.; Doyle, K.E.; Duffy, D.; Humphries, P.; Horta, A.; Baumgartner, L.J. 2020. Mortality events resulting from Australia’s catastrophic fires threaten aquatic biota. Global Change Biology, 26(10), 5345-5350; DOI:10.1111/gcb.15282.
  7. Magalhães, A.L.B; Daga, V.S.; Bezerra, L.A.V.; Vitule, J.R.S; Jacobi, C.M.; Silva, L.G.M. 2020. All the colors of the world: biotic homogenizationdifferentiation dynamics of freshwater fish communities on demand of the Brazilian aquarium trade. Hydrobiologia, 874 (18), 3897-3915; https://doi.org/10.1007/s10750-020-04307-w.
  8. Lynch, Abigail J.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Boys, C. A.; Conallin, J.; Cowx, I. G.; Finlayson, C. Max; Franklin, P. A.; Hogan, Zeb; Koehn, J. D.; Mccartney, M. P.; O'brien, G.; Phouthavong, K.; Silva, L. G. M.; Tob, C. A.; Valbo-Jørgensen, J.; Vu, A. V.; Whiting, L.; Wibowo, A.; Duncan, P. 2019. Speaking the same language: can the sustainable development goals translate the needs of inland fisheries into irrigation decisions? Marine and Freshwater Research, v.70, p.1211 - 1228.
  9. Baumgartner, L. J. & Silva, L. G. M. 2019. Global advances in fish passage research and practice. Journal of Ecohydraulics 4(1):2-3 doi:10.1080/24705357.2019.1670745.
  10. Wilkes, M. A.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Boys, C. A.; Silva, L. G. M.; O’connor, J.; Jones, M.; Stuart, I.; Habit, E.; Link, O.; Webb, J. A. 2018. Fish-Net: Probabilistic models for fishway planning, design and monitoring to support environmentally sustainable hydropower. Fish and Fisheries, v.00, p.1 - 21.
  11. Silva, L.G.M.; Baumgartner, L.; Deng, Z. Daniel; Fjeldstad, H-P. 2018. Hydropower development and fish management: a food–water–energy nexus requiring international and multidisciplinary approach. Marine and Freshwater Research, 69(12), pp. i-iii. DOI: 10.1071/MFv69n12_ED.
  12. Silva, L.G.M.; Beirão, B.V.; Falcão, R.C.; Castro, A.L.F.; Dias, E.W. 2018. It’s a catfish! Novel approaches are needed to study the effects of rapid decompression on benthic species. Marine and Freshwater Research, 69(12), p. 1922-1933. DOI: 10.1071/MF18267.
  13. Wilkes, M.A.; Webb, J.A.; Pompeu, P.S.; Silva, L.G.M.; Vowles, A.S.; Baker, C.F.; Franklin, P., Link, O.; Habit, E.; Kemp, P.S. 2018. Not just a migration problem: Metapopulations, habitat shifts and gene flow are also important for fishway science and management. River Research and Applications. DOI: 10.1002/rra.3320.
  14. Romanelli, J. P.; Silva, L. G. M.; Horta, A.; Picoli, R. A. 2018. Site Selection for Hydropower Development: a GIS-Based Framework to Improve Planning in Brazil. Journal of Environmental Engineering, v.144, p. 1 -10.
  15. Beirão, B.V; Silva, L.G.M.; Walker, R.; Brown, R. 2018. Determining barotrauma on the Amazonian catfish Pimelodus pictus experimentally exposed to simulated rapid decompression occurred in hydropower turbines. Marine and Freshwater Research, 69(12), p. 1913-1921. DOI: 10.1071/MF18142.
  16. Grieve, B.; Baumgartner, L.J.; Robinson, W.; Silva, L.G.M.; Pomorin, K.; Thorncraft, G.; Ning, N. 2018. Evaluating the use of PIT tagging for tropical river fishes: a case study involving two Mekong River species. Fisheries Research, v.200, p.43 – 48.
  17. Grieve, B.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Robinson, W.; Silva, L. G. M.; Pomorin, K.; Thorncraft, G.; Ning, N. 2018. Flexible and non-invasive passive integrated transponder (PIT) tagging protocols for tropical freshwater fish species. Methodsx, v.5, p.299 – 303.
  18. Romanelli, J. P.; Picoli, R. A.; Silva, L. G. M. 2017. Socioenvironmental evaluation of Small Hydropower Plants: a proposal to enhance current environmental impact analyses in Brazil (Original title: Avaliação socioambiental de Pequenas Centrais Hidrelétricas: uma proposta para o aprimoramento das avaliações vigentes no Brasil). Revista Espacios, Vol. 38 (Nº 07), p.1-11.
  19. Suzuki, F. M.; Dunham, J. B.; Silva, L. G. M.; Alves, C. B. M.; Pompeu, P. S. 2016. Factors Influencing Movements of Two Migratory Fishes within the Tailrace of a Large Neotropical Dam and their Implications for Hydropower Impacts. Rivers Research and Applications (Print), DOI: 10.1002/rra.3105.
  20. Hughes, R. M.; Alves, C. B. M.; Amezcua, F.; Claussen, J.; Cooke, S. J.; Cowx, I. G.; Fausch, K. D.; Ferreira, M. T.; Franzin, W. G.; Hall, D.; Ipinmoroti, M. O.; Ligeiro, R.; Mercado-Silva, N.; Miller, M.; Pompeu, P. S.; Schmidt, D. C.; Silva, L. G. M.; Terra, B. F. 2016. Preparing for International Research and Teaching. Fisheries, v.41, p.464 – 465.
  21. Silva, L. G. M. 2016. Cooperation agreement beteween the Brazialian Society of Ichthyology and the American Fisheries Society: history, activities summary and future perspective (Original title: Acordo de cooperação entre a Sociedade Brasileira de Ictiologia e a American Fisheries Society: histórico, resumo das atividades realizadas e perspectivas futuras). Boletim - Sociedade De Ictiologia de Londrina, v.120, p.2 – 3.
  22. Beirao, B. V.; Marciano, N. C. B.; Dias, L. S.; Falcão, R. C.; Dias, E. W.; Fabrino, D. L.; Martinez, Carlos Barreira; Silva, L. G. M.; Walker, R.; Brown, R. S.; Deng, Z. D. 2015. Barotrauma in fish at hydropower plants: tools to conduct studies (Original title: Barotrauma em peixes em usinas hidrelétricas: ferramentas para o estudo). Boletim, Sociedade Brasileira de Ictiologia, v.115, p.26 – 36.
  23. Brown, R. S.; Colotelo, A. H.; Pflugrath, B. D.; Boys, C. A.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Deng, Z. D.; Silva, L. G. M.; Brauner, C. J.; Mallen-Cooper, M.; Phonekhampeng, O.; Thorncraft, G.; Singhanouvong, D. 2014. Understanding Barotrauma in Fish Passing Hydro Structures: A Global Strategy for Sustainable Development of Water Resources. Fisheries (Bethesda, Md.), v.39, p.108 – 122.
  24. Tomé, F.L.F.O; Martinez, C. B.; Faria, M. T. C.; Silva, L. G. M.; Santos, H. A.; Viana, E.M.F. 2013. Analyses of the hydraulic behaviour of a new vertical slot fish passage with different slopes (Original title: Verificação do Comportamento Hidráulico em um Novo Mecanismo de Transposição de Peixes do Tipo Escada em Diferentes Declividades). Revista Brasileira de Recursos Hídricos, v.18, p.107 – 116.
  25. Silva, L. G. M.; Nogueira, L. B.; Maia, Bruno Pereira; Resende, L. B. 2012. Fish passage post-construction issues: analysis of distribution, attraction and passage efficiency metrics at the Baguari Dam fish ladder to approach the problem. Neotropical Ichthyology (Impresso), v.10, p.751 – 762.
  26. Nestler, J. M.; Pompeu, P. S.; Goodwin, R. A.; Smith, D. L.; Silva, L. G. M.; Baigún, C. R. M.; Oldani, N. O. 2012. The River Machine: A template for fish movement and habitat, fluvial geomorphology, fluid dynamics and biogeochemical cycling. Rivers Research and Applications (Print), v.28, p.490 – 503.
  27. Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2010. Strobe lights as an alternative deterrence system for fish in turbine stop/start over processes (Original title: Luz Estroboscópica como Alternativa de Barreira para Peixes em Paradas de Turbinas Hidráulicas). PCH Notícias & SHP News, v.46, p.14 – 18.
  28. Hahn, L.; English, K.; Carosfeld, J.; Silva, L. G. M.; Latini, João Dirço; Agostinho, A. A.; Fernandez, D. R. 2007. Preliminary study on the application of radio-telemetry techniques to evaluate movements of fish in the Lateral canal at Itaipu Dam, Brazil. Neotropical Ichthyology, v.5, p.103 – 108.
  29. Alves, C. B. M.; Silva, L. G. M.; Godinho, A. L. 2007. Radiotelemetry of a female jaú, Zungaro jahu (Ihering, 1898) (Siluriformes:Pimelodidae), passed upstream of Funil Dam, rio Grande, Brazil. Neotropical Ichthyology (Impresso), v.5, p.229 – 232.
  30. Bowen, M. D.; Marques, S.; Silva, L. G. M.; Vono, V.; Godinho, H. P. 2006. Comparing on site human and video counts at Igarapava fish ladder, Southeastern Brazil. Neotropical Ichthyology (Impresso), v.4, p.291 – 294.
  31. Vono, V.; Silva, L. G. M.; Maia, Bruno Pereira; Godinho, H. P. 2002. Reproductive biology of three sympatric species Pimelodus maculatus (Siluriformes, Pimelodidae), Leporinus amblyrhynchus e Schizodon nasutus (Characiformes, Anostomidae) in the newly formed Miranda reservoir, Upper Paraná. (Original title: Biologia reprodutiva de três espécies simpátricas de peixes neotropicais: Pimelodus maculatus (Siluriformes, Pimelodidae), Leporinus amblyrhynchus e Schizodon nasutus (Characiformes, Anostomidae) no recém-formado reservatório de Miranda, Alto Paraná). Revista Brasileira de Zoologia (Impresso) (Cessou em 2008. Cont. ISSN 1984-4670 Zoologia (Curitiba. Impresso)), v.19, p.819 – 826.
  • Book chapters
  1. Pittock, J.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Finlayson, C. M.; Thiem, J. D.; Forbes, J. P.; Silva, L. G. M.; Arthington, A. H. 2018. Managing threats to freshwater systems within protected areas. In: Finlayson, C.M.; Arthington, A.H.; Pittock, J. Freshwater ecosystems in protected areas: conservation and management. 1 Ed. Oxford: Routledge, v.1, p. 1-280.
  2. Carvalho, G.L.; Fonseca, L.R.O.; Martins, D.S.; Menezes, S.S. & Silva, L.G.M. 2017. Hydropower plants and fish mortality: development of new technologies to study and mitigate the impact towards sustainability of the energy sector (Original title: Usinas hidrelétricas e mortandade de peixes: desenvolvimento de tecnologia para estudo e mitigação do impacto visando a sustentabilidade no setor elétrico). 9ª Edição do Prêmio Odebrecht para o Desenvolvimento Sustentável. p. 71-86.
  3. Silva, L.G.M. 2012. Migratory parameters e upstream passage of curimbatás and mandis-amarelos in the Grande River (Original title: Parâmetros migratórios e transposição de curimbatás e mandis-amarelos no médio rio Grande). In: Transposição de Peixes. 1 ED. Belo Horizonte: CEMIG, v.1, p. 111-132.
  • Books
  1. Vieira, F.; Gomes, J. P. C.; Maia, Bruno Pereira; Silva, L. G. M. 2015. Peixes do Quadrilátero Ferrífero - Guia de Identificação (Fishes from the “Iron Quadrangle” – A guide for identification). Belo Horizonte: Fundação Biodiversitas, v.1. p.208.
    • Research Reports
    1. Silva, Luiz G. M.; Castro, A. L. F.; Kemp, P. 2021. Fish mortality at hydropower plants: identifying problems and co-creating solutions. São João del-Rei, Federal University of São João del-Rei, Brasil and University of Southampton, United Kingdom.
    2. Bercovitz, Y.; Bonnet, A.; Silva, Luiz G. M. 2021. SINOP Dam - Expert panel report phase 2 - Solutions to reduce fish mortality downstream the dam. EDF-France, France.
    3. Silva, Luiz G. M.; Val, A. C.; Bonnet, A.; Naudascher, R.; Schaetzen, F.; Castro, J. S.; Vigouroux, R.; Roussel, J. 2020. Fish mortality at Sinop Dam - Report of the expert panel Phase 1 - Analyses of potential causes. ETH-Zürich and EDF-France, Zürich, Switzerland.
    4. Deinet, S.; Scott-Gatty, K.; Rotton, H.; Twardek, W. M.; Marconi, V.; Mcrae, L.; Baumgartner, Lee J.; Brink, K.; Claussen, J. E.; Cooke, S. J.; Darwall, W.; Eriksson, B. K.; Leaniz, C. G.; Hogan, Z.; Royte, J.; Silva, L. G. M.; Thieme, M. L.; Tickner, D.; Waldman, J.; Wanningen, H.; Weyl, O. L. F.; Berkhuysen, A. 2020. The Living Planet Index (LPI) for migratory freshwater fish - Technical Report. World Fish Migration Foundation, The Netherlands.
    5. Ning, N.; Doyle, K.; Silva, Luiz G. M.; Boys, C. A.; Mcpherson, J.; Fowler, A.; Mcgregor, C.; Bambrilla, E. M.; Thiebaud, I.; Preez, J.; Robinson, W.; Deng, Z. D.; Fu, T.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2019. Predicting invasive fish survival through the Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro scheme. Albury: Charles Sturt University.
    6. Doyle, K.; Ning, N.; Silva, Luiz G. M.; Mcpherson, J.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2019. Screen effectiveness trials for Redfin perch. Albury: Charles Sturt University.
    7. Pearce, L.; Silva, L. G. M.; Mabon, S.; Horta, A.; Duffy, D.; Ning, N.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2018. Finding forgotten fishes, the research for two endangered species in the NSW Murray Catchment. Albury:Institute for Land, Water and Society.
    8. Silva, L. G. M.; Pearce, L.; Mabon, S.; Horta, A.; Duffy, D.; Kopf, S.; Ning, N.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2018. Macca's in the Mannus, Macquarie perch refuge in the Upper Murray. Albury: Institute for Land, Water and Society.
    9. Silva, Luiz G. M.; Boys, C. A.; Ning, N.; Doyle, K.; Mcpherson, J.; Fowler, A.; Mcgregor, C.; Bambrilla, E. M.; Thiebaud, I.; Preez, J.; Robinson, W.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2018. Predicting invasive fish survival through the Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro scheme: Results summary. Albury: Charles Sturt University.
    10. Silva, L. G. M.; Bell, K.; Baumgartner, L. J. 2017. Clean-up procedures applied to global fish kill events: a review for the National Carp Control Plan. Deakin: Fisheries Research and Development Corporation.
    11. Baumgartner, Lee J.; Boys, Craig A.; Gilligan, D.; Silva, Luiz G. M.; Pflugrath, B. D.; Ning, N. 2017. Fish Transfer Risk associated with Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro scheme. Albury: Charles Sturt University.
    • International Conference Proceedings
    • I have presented over 94 abstracts in regional, national and international scientific conferences and here I include only those presented at international meetings.           

    1. Silva, L. G. M. 2021. Fright reaction in the Neotropical catfish Pimelodus maculatus elicited by alarm substance: a natural deterrence system? In: SEB's 2021 Annual Conference, online. Society for Experimental Biology.
    2. Silva, L. G. M. 2019. Migratory fish from the Neotropics: conservation status, threats and management pitfalls. In: American Fisheries Society and The Wildlife Society Joint Annual Conference, Reno. 2019 American Fisheries Society Meeting.
    3. Silva, L. G. M.; Doyle, K.; Horta, A. 2019. Spatial distribution of wildfire in Australia and known effects on freshwater aquatic systems. In: American Fisheries Society and The Wildlife Society Joint Annual Conference, Reno. 2019 American Fisheries Society Meeting.
    4. Silva, L.G.M. 2018. Twenty years of fish passage policies establishment in Brazil: a review of the current status of fish passage science. In: Fish Passage 2018: International Conference on River Connectivity, Albury, NSW, Australia.
    5. Silva, L.G.M.; Beirão, B.V.; Falcão, R.C.; Castro, A.L.F.; Dias, E.W. 2018. Warning, it’s a catfish! Novel approaches are needed to study the effects of rapid decompression on benthonic species. In: First International Symposium on Hydropower and Fish Management, Albury, NSW, Australia.
    6. Beirão, B.V.; Silva, L.G.M.; Brown, R.; Walker, R. Determining barotrauma in the Pictus catfish, Pimelodus pictus, experimentally exposed to simulated hydropower turbine passage In: First International Symposium on Hydropower and Fish Management, 2018, Albury, NSW, Australia.
    7. Magalhães, A.L.B.; Brito, M.F.G; Silva, L.G.M. 2018. Fluorescent invasion has begun: reproduction of transgenic zebrafish Dani rerio (Hamilton 1822) in Brazil In: VII Iberian Congress of Ichthyology, 2018, Faro, Portugal.
    8. Mozelli, L. A.; Silva, L. G. M.; Miranda, V. R. F. 2017. Automation of Pressure Control in a Pneumatic Hipo-Hiperbaric Chamber to Evaluate Barotrauma on Fish. In: 147th Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Tampa. Abstracts of the 147th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    9. Silva, L. G. M.; Falcao, R. C.; Oliveira, A. C. 2017. Fish Passage for Tropical Potamodromous Fish: Is 'the More, the Better' Always True? In: 147th Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Tampa. Abstracts of the 147th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    10. Silva, L. G. M. 2017. What has been the contribution of fish passages for migratory fish conservation in tropical systems? In: 5th Biennial Symposium of the International Society for River Science, Hamilton, New Zealand.
    11. Wilkes, M. A.; Baker, C.; Franklin, P.; Habit, E.; Link, O.; Silva, L. G. M.; Pompeu, P. S.; Vowles, A.; Kemp, P. 2017. Fish passage research needs to diversify its concepts and methods to work on a global scale. In: 5th Biennial Symposium of the International Society for River Science, Hamilton, New Zealand.
    12. Castro, A. L. F.; Silva, L. G. M. 2017. Pitfalls of Using Molecular Tools to Evaluate Man-Made Barriers to Migration of a Mega Diverse and Poorly Understood Ichthyofauna. In: 147th Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Tampa. Abstracts of the 147th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    13. Silva, L. G. M.; Romanelli, J. P.; Horta, A.; Picoli, R. A. 2017. Towards Sustainable Hydropower: A GIS-Based Framework to Improve Planning and Fish Conservation. In: 147th Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Tampa. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    14. Boys, C. A.; Brown, R.; Deng, Z. D.; Baumgartner, L. J.; Pflugrath, B. D.; Silva, L. G. M.; Phonekhampeng, O.; Thorncraft, G. 2016. Ecohydraulic research to protect downstream migrating fish at hydropower and other river infrastructure: solving a Global problem through international collaboration. In: 11th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics, Melbourne. Proceedings of the 11th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics.
    15. Wilkes, M. A.; Aarestrup, K.; Jepsen, N.; Ettmer, B.; Franklin, P.; Baker, C.; Habit, E.; Link, O.; Kemp, P.; Pompeu, P. S.; Silva, L. G. M.; Webb, A.; Stewardson, M. 2016. Knowledge exchange for efficient passage of fish in the Southern hemisphere (KEEPFISH). In: 11th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics, Melbourne. Proceedings of the 11th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics.
    16. Aquino, D. N.; Silva, L. G. M.; Fabrino, D. L. 2016. Can histological data help determine susceptibility of fish to barotrauma due to turbine passage? In: 7th World Fisheries Congress, Busan. Anais do 7th World Fisheries Congress, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    17. Silva, L. G. M.; Falcão, R. C.; Oliveira, A. C. 2016. Development of a mathematical model to evaluate fish passage success in Neotropical basins. In: 7th World Fisheries Congress, Busan. Anais do 7th World Fisheries Congress, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    18. Walker, R.; Brown, R. S.; Silva, L. G. M.; Beirao, B. V. 2015. A Standardized Research Framework to Better Understand Barotrauma-Related Injuries for Sustainable Hydropower in the Mekong River Basin. In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    19. Resende, L. B.; Fabrino, D. L.; Silva, L. G. M. 2015. Assessment of Suture Type Performance on Survival and Healing of Warm Water Fish Surgically Implanted with Acoustic Transmitters. In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1.
    20. Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2015. Deterrence System to Protect Fish at Hydropower Dams in Brazil: Prospective and Potential Use In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    21. Silva, L. G. M.; Pompeu, P. S.; Baigún, C.R.M. 2015. Freshwater Fish Sampling in South America: Common Methods and Challenges for Standardization. In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    22. Silva, L. G. M. 2015. Mitigation and Conservation Actions for Fish Management in Tropical Rivers of Brazil Impacted by Hydropower Plants. In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    23. Beirao, B. V.; Silva, L. G. M.; Falcao, R. C. 2015. New Approach to Evaluate Barotrauma Susceptibility in Fish. In: 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference, Portland. Abstracts of the 145th American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting and Conference. Bethseda: American Fisheries Society, v.1. p.1 – 1.
    24. Beirao, B. V.; Silva, L. G. M. 2013. Evaluation of internal and external injuries caused by barotrauma in Brazilian fishes after passage through hydropower turbines. In: 143rd Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Little Rock. Fisheries and Natural Resources 6 Symposium.
    25. Silva, L. G. M. 2012. Hydropower in Brazil: future direction, fisheries impacts and research needs. In: 142nd American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting, Saint Paul. Abstracts of the 142nd Annual Meeting.
    26. Maia, B. P.; Silva, L. G. M. 2011. Monitoring a Vertical Slot Fish Ladder at Baguari Dam, Doce River, Brazil. In: Hydrovision Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. Proceedings of the Hydrovision Brazil Conference.
    27. Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2011. Problemas relativos à passagem de peixes em UHEs no Brasil. In: Simpósio de Hidráulica e Recursos Hídricos dos Países de Língua Oficial Portuguesa, 2011, Porto de Galinhas. Anais do 10o SILUSBA.
    28. Magalhaes, V. P. F.; Magalhaes, P. H. V.; Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2011. Simulation of pressure change during fish passage through turbine In: Hydrovision Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. Proceedings of the Hydrovision Brazil Conference.
    29. Viana, E.M.F.; Tome, F. L. F. O.; Santos, H. A.; Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2011. Turbulent kinetic energy variation influenced by the declivity in the tanks of a fish ladder. In: Hydrovision Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. Proceedings of the Hydrovision Brazil Conference.
    30. Silva, L. G. M.; Godinho, A. L. 2011. Migration of Curimba at Volta Grande and Igarapava Reservoirs, Grande River, Brazil. In: 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting, Seattle. Proceedings of the 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting.
    31. Silva, L. G. M.; Maia, B. P. 2011. Monitoring fish passage at Baguari Dam, Doce River, Brazil. In: 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting, Seattle. Proceedings of the 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting.
    32. Silva, L. G. M.; Godinho, A. L. 2011. Passage of Mandi-amarelo through a Kaplan turbine at Igarapava Dam, Brazil. In: 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting, Seattle. Proceedings of the 141st American Fisheries Society Meeting.
    33. Silva, L. G. M.; Martinez, C. B. 2010. Barreira de bolhas para impedimento de entrada de peixes em turbinas hidráulicas In: XXIV Congreso Latinoamericano de Hidráulica, Punta del Este. XXIV Congreso Latinoamericano de Hidráulica.
    34. Bowen, M. D.; Silva, L. G. M.; Hiebert, S. A. 2007. High Intensity Strobe Light’s effect on Delta smelt. In: AFS Annual Meeting, San Francisco. Proceedings of the AFS Annual Meeting.
    35. Silva, L. G. M.; Godinho, A. L.; Godinho, H. P.; Kynard, B. 2004. Migration of curimba (Prochilodus lineatus) passed experimentally upstream of the Volta Grande Dam, Grande River, Brazil. In: Sixth Fish Biology Congress, 2004, Manaus. Advances in Fish Biology/Symposium Proceedings, p.185 – 188.

Research network

I'm honoured to be part of various initiatives related to fish ecology and hydropower research. Some of them involve:  
  • 2013-ongoing The Annex XIII - Hydropower and Fish, The International Energy Agency Technology Collaboration Programme on Hydropower (IEA Hydro).
  • 2021 Sustainable Hydropower for Africa, Asia and South America Network - SHAASAN.
  • 2015 to 2018 Leader of the Research Group in Technologies Applied for Research and Conservation of the Fish Fauna, National Coundil for Scientific and Technological Development, Brazil.
  • 2006 Review of the fish threatened species list of Minas Gerais state.
  • 2005 Review of the Atlas of Priority Areas for Conservation of the Biodiversity of Minas Gerais State, Brazil.

Research partners

Awards

  • 2019 – Excellence Awards, category Vibrant Regional Communities. Award granted by Charles Sturt University for Leading Research for the successful development of the project “Sustainability of Snowy 2.0 Pumped Hydro Scheme. This project achieved significant milestones with results that would lead to mitigation measures for the pumped-hydro scheme and also led to the development of a ecohydraulic facility at CSU including a world-first pressure chamber to test the effects of pressurization on fish.
  • 2017Best Oral Presentation. For the study “Fish Fauna Composition at High Altitude Streams at the São José Mountain Chain, MG, Brazil, Evaluated Using Baited Underwater Remote Videos (BRUV)” presented by Natalia Melo in the XXII Brazilian Meeting of Ichthyologists. It was granted the best oral presentation award for the whole conference. This study showed the effectiveness of BRUVs as a non-invasive sampling method, particularly important to reduce capture and manual handling of fish in headwater streams. I was Natalia's co-supervisor.
  • 2016Winner of the 9th Edition of the Odebrecht Sustainable Development Award – This award is offered by Odebrecht, a multinational company, based in Brazil, from the Civil Engineering industry. It is granted to undergraduate students and their supervisor for projects aimed to promote sustainable development within the civil engineering sector. I supervised five undergraduate students enrolled at different engineering courses (civil, chemistry and telecommunications) in the development of a project aimed to establish methodologies to study the effects of rapid decompression on fish by simulating pressure changes occurring in a hydropower turbine. The results of the project led to the proposal of mitigation measures likely to reduce fish mortality at hydropower plants. Our project was awarded out of over 250 submissions.
  • 2015 – Best paper Award – I co-authored the paper “Understanding barotrauma in fish passing hydro structures: a global strategy for sustainable development of water resources” (see Appendix 1 for a list of my peer-reviewed publications) led by Dr Richard Brown, submitted to the award offered by the Energy and Environment Directorate – USA Department of Energy. The paper discusses global research needs to better understanding the occurrence of barotrauma in fish exposed to rapid decompression passing hydro structures. It presents a new framework of data needed to comprehensively advance science in this area. It was awarded best paper out of 1,184 running for the prize.
  • 2010 – Best paper award – research category. I authored this conference paper (“Fish mortality in hydropower turbines: problematization and perspectives for mitigation”) presented in the VI Brazilian Conference on Small Hydropower (VI Conferência de PCH – 2010). This paper presented some of the results from my PhD studying the effects of non-physical barriers and potential fish deterrents to minimize entrainment in hydropower structures.
  • 2002 – World Wildlife Fund, Russel E. Train Education for Nature Program (EFN-WWF) Award. The EFN-WWF program aims to provide scholarship for post-graduate students (at master or PhD levels) to develop their projects and pay tuition fees if needed, given the potential of their projects to lead to biodiversity conservation in their countries. I entered my research project into this highly competitive process including submissions for the entire Latin America. For the 2002 round, my project was awarded with four others from South America. I became an EFN-WWF alumni and have a few benefits still outstanding from that.

Media

Here you can find interviews, media reports about our research and other types of publications.

The Conversation Australia

Article: Before and after: see how bushfire and rain turned the Macquarie perch’s home to sludge.

By: Baumgartner, L.; Doyle, K.; Silva, L. G. M.; Pearce, L.; Ning, N.   Year: 2020

Carp clean-up study.

Interview to Prime 7 News, Albury, NSW, Australia about our study discussing clean-up strategies for the carp management plan comissioned by the Australian government (2019).

Rare perch found near Murray River.

Interview and podcast to Charles Sturt University media about our findings of Macquarie perch (Macquaria australasica) in the Upper Murray River, NSW, Australia (2018).

Projects and Funding

Over 15 years I have managed to secure funding from various sources to conduct my research. These include government agencies, hydropower industry and international funding bodies. Some of the most recent projects (active or finalised) are listed below. For each one of these projects I've been the principal or co-investigator.      

  • Active projects
  •  Project title  Funding agency
     Enhancing fisheries resilience and hydropower development: the road to sustainable energy-water-food NEXUS in Brazil  British Council, FAPEMIG   
     Unravelling ecology and behaviour of armored catfish in Neotropical streams using Baited Remote Underwater Videos: new strategy to improve conservation.  The Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund
  • Past projects
  •  Project title  Funding agency
     Predicting redfin survival through the Snowy 2.0 scheme  Snowy Hydro, Australia   
     Collaboration agreement on Fish and Hydropower Research  Hydro Tasmania, Australia
     Macca’s in the Mannus, Macquarie Perch Refuge in the Upper Murray  NSW DPI-Fisheries, Australia
     Murray Small-bodied threatened fish project NSW DPI-Fisheries, Australia 
     Development of strategies to optimise release and clean up strategies underpinning possible use of herpesvirus 3 (CyHV-3) for carp biocontrol in Australia Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), Australia 
     Planning and methodology scoping for the evaluation and socioeconomic characterization of the fishery in the influence area of the future Itaocara Dam, Paraíba do Sul River. Itaocara Consortium, Brazil 
     Environmentally sustainable irrigation solutions for the Murray-Darling Basin Global Connections Fund, Australia 
     Knowledge exchange for efficient passage of fishes in the Southern Hemisphere EU-Horizon 2020, Europe 
     Feasibility of non-physical barriers for fish protection at hydroelectric power plants and irrigation in-takes: revealing knowledge gaps and designing criteria for a sustainable energy and water resources management within Brazil and the UK. FAPEMIG, University of Southampton, Brazil/UK 
     Migration, spawning sites and early development of two migratory species of the Jequitinhonha River: subsides to evaluate the need for fish passage at Irapé Dam. FAPEMIG/CEMIG, Brazil 
     Fish passage through hydropower turbines: effects of barotrauma and implications for fish conservation. FAPEMIG/CNPq, Brazil 
     Development of technology to determine the swimming capacity of the Neotropical ichthyofauna CEMIG, Brazil 
     Program for characterization, research, monitoring and management of the aquatic biota at the Upper Pará River FERLIG, Brazil 
     Non-physical barriers to deter fish entrance on hydropower turbines. CEMIG, Brazil 
     Fish migration in hydropower reservoirs: behaviour and mortality CEMIG, Brazil 

Supervision

I have had the privilege to work together, supervising or co-supervising over 40 students at bachelor, master or PhD levels and a further post-doc. I'm passioned about contributing to shape people's career and hope to continue to do so as long as I'm an active researcher.

If you're interested in the research topics we work on and would like to explore a career in ecohydraulics applied to hydropower and fish, feel free to contact me to discuss possibilities.

Contact

Address

ETH Zürich
Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering
Institute for Environmental Engineering
Stefano Franscini Platz 5
8063 Zürich
Switzerland

lumartins@ethz.ch

+41 44 633 76 59