Keith NislowKeith Nislow

Adjunct Associate Professor

Research Fishery Biologist, USDA Forest Service
Northeastern Research Station


Primary Interests

Dr. Nislow conducts research on the relationship between land use, aquatic habitat, and the distribution, abundance of fish and aquatic invertebrates.  Specializing in establishing explicit, mechanistic links between environmental variation with the behavior, growth, and survival of stream salmonid fishes, Dr. Nislow is particularly interested in using basic science to assist restoration, conservation, and management.  Dr. Nislow currently serves as a technical adviser to the Connecticut River Atlantic Salmon Commission, and the Green and White Mountain National Forests, and as an Associate Editor of the North American Journal of Fisheries Management.

Current Projects

  • Bioenergetics approaches to habitat suitability modeling for juvenile salmonids
  • Effects of stream restoration on habitats, invertebrates, and fish
  • Relative importance of environmental vs. heritable variation in juvenile Atlantic salmon performance
  • Using genetic and stable isotope markers to understand Atlantic salmon movement and dispersal between habitats
  • Effects of logging history on brook trout populations

Current Student Projects

Interactive effects of community dynamics and habitat structure on juvenile Atlantic salmon growth and population density. Darren Ward, PhD (Dartmouth College – Biology)

Movement and dispersal strategies of wild trout. Jason Coombs, PhD (UMASS-OEB)

Invertebrate prey phenology and seasonal growth in three co-occurring salmonid species. Jeffrey Ojala, MS (UMASS-WFCON)

The effects of LWD addition on fish community structure in the Green Mountain National Forest . Dana Jedlicka, MS (UMASS-WFCON)

Selected Recent Publications

Book chapters

2009. Nutrient restoration using Atlantic salmon carcasses as a component of habitat management in Scottish Highland streams.  In: Proceedings of the Special Symposium of the Atlantic Salmon Trust: Salmonid Habitat Management and Restoration ed. P. Kemp. Blackwell Science, Cambridge

2009. Riparian management: alternative paradigms and implications for wild Atlantic salmon. In: Proceedings of the Special Symposium of the Atlantic Salmon Trust: Salmonid Habitat Management and Restoration ed. P. Kemp. Blackwell Science, Cambridge

2011. Atlantic Salmon Ecology (three chapters) ed. O. Aas, A. Klemetsen, S. Einum, J. Skurdal.  Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford.; Aquatic conservation planning at the landscape scale. In Landscape Scale Conservation Planning ed. R. Baldwin and S. Trombulak. Springer, London.

Refereed Journal Articles

Brooks, et al. 2012. Forest succession and terrestrial-aquatic biodiversity in small, forested watersheds: a review of principles, relationships and implications for management. Forestry 85(3), doi:10.1093/forestry/cps031.

Brooks, et al. 2012. Preliminary assessment of mercury accumulation in Massachusetts and Minnesota seasonal forest pools. Wetlands 32: 653-663.

Whiteley, et al. 2012. Sampling strategies for estimating brook trout effective population size. Conservation Genetics 13: 625-637.

Einum, et al. 2012. The spatial scale of competition from recruits on an older cohort of Atlantic salmon. Oecologia 167: 1017-1025.

Armstrong, J. D.; Nislow, K. H. 2012. Modelling approaches for relating effects of change in river flow to populations of Atlantic salmon and brown trout. Fisheries Management and Ecology. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2400.2011.00835.x

Nislow, K. H.; Armstrong, J. D. 2011. Towards a life-history-based management framework for the effects of flow on juvenile salmonids in streams and rivers. Fisheries Management and Ecology. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2400.2011.00810.

Kasprak, et al. 2011. A LIDAR-derived evaluation of watershed-scale large woody debris sources and recruitment mechanisms in coastal Maine, USA. River Research and Application doi: 10.1002/rra.1532.

King, et al. 2011. Early-successional forest ecosystems: far from “forgotten”.  Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 9: 319-320.

Letcher, et al. 2011. Maintenance of phenotypic variation: repeatibility, heritability, and size-dependent processes in a wild brook trout population. Evolutionary Applications 4: 602-615.

Coombs, et al. 2010. PedAgree: software to quantify error and assess accuracy and congruence for genetically reconstructed pedigree relationships. Conservation Genetics Resources 2: 147-150.

Davidson,  R. S.; Letcher, B. H.; Nislow, K. H. 2010. Drivers of growth variation in juvenile Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar): an elasticity analysis approach.  Journal of Animal Ecology 79: 1113-1121.

Hudy, et al. 2010. Dispersal and within-stream population structure of brook trout revealed by pedigree reconstruction analysis, Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 139: 1276-1287.

Ward et al. 2010. Bioaccumulation syndrome: identifying factors that make stream food webs vulnerable to elevated mercury accumulation.  Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1195: 62-83.

Ward, et al. 2010. Reduced trace-element concentrations in fast-growing juvenile Atlantic salmon in natural streams. Environmental Science and Technology 44: 3245-3251.

Zimmerman, et al. 2009. Determining the effects of dams on subdaily variation in river flows at the sub-basin scale. Rivers Research and Application, DOI: 10.1002/rra.1324

Nislow, K. H.; Kynard, B. E. 2009. The role of anadromous sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) in nutrient and material transport between marine and freshwater environments. American Fisheries Society Symposium, 69: 485-494.

Ward, et al. 2009. Increased population density and suppressed prey biomass: relative impacts on juvenile Atlantic salmon growth. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, 138: 135-143.

McCormick, et al. 2009. Impacts of episodic acidification on in-stream survival and physiological impairment of Atlantic salmon smolts.  Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 66: 394-403.

Einum, S., Sundt‐Hansen, L., & H Nislow, K. 2006. The partitioning of density‐dependent dispersal, growth and survival throughout ontogeny in a highly fecund organism. Oikos, 113(3), 489-496.

Sotiropoulos, J.C., Nislow, K. H. and Ross, M. R. 2006, Brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis, microhabitat selection and diet under low summer stream flows. Fisheries Management and Ecology, 13: 149–155. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2400.2006.00487.

Nislow, K.H. and W.H. Lowe. 2006. Influence of logging history and riparian forest characteristics on macroinvertebrates and brook trout. Freshwater Biology 51: 388-397.

Magilligan, F. J., & Nislow, K. H. 2005. Changes in hydrologic regime by dams. Geomorphology, 71(1), 61-78.

Nislow, K.H. 2005. Forest change and stream fish habitat: lessons from ‘Olde’ and New England . Journal of Fish Biology 67: 186-204

Einum. S. and K.H. Nislow. 2005. Local-scale density dependent survival of mobile organisms in continuous habitats: an experimental test using Atlantic salmon. Oecologia 143: 203 – 210.

Lowe, W.H., Nislow, K.H. and Likens, G.E. 2005. Forest structure and stream salamander diets: Implications for terrestrial-aquatic connectivity. Proceedings of the International Association of Theoretical and Applied Limnology 29: 279 – 286

Kennedy, B.P., Chamberlain, C.P., Blum, J.D., Nislow, K.H. and C.L. Folt. 2005. Comparing naturally-occurring isotopes of carbon, nitrogen, and strontium as markers for the rearing locations of Atlantic salmon. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 62: 48-57.