The Problem with Magnetic Distortion

Steelhead populations are suffering. For that’s due to the magnetic distortion. That’s also clearly caused by the presence of iron and steel in hatcheries. These metals can also interfere with the fish’s internal magnetic compass. Thereby leaving them unable to navigate properly.

The Solution: Non-Magnetic Materials

To prevent this distortion, hatcheries should also use non-magnetic materials. For that’s such as aluminum or fiberglass in their construction. These materials will also not interfere with the fish’s magnetic sense. Thereby allowing them to navigate properly.

Magnetic hatcheries steelhead

Regular Testing is Key

Hatcheries must also regularly test the water to ensure that the magnetic field is not distorted. So by monitoring the water quality, hatcheries can take steps to prevent any magnetic interference that could harm the steelhead population.


  1. “Magnetic map in steelhead trout.” ScienceDaily, ScienceDaily, 23 May 2016,
  2. “The Effects of Anthropogenic Magnetic Fields on Pacific Salmon and Steelhead Trout.” Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, 2010,
  3. “Magnetic Orientation and Navigation in Marine Turtles, Lobsters, and Molluscs: Concepts and Conundrums.” Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 51, no. 6, 2011, pp. 922–936., doi:10.1093/icb/icr025.

Iron and steel in hatcheries can harm steelhead populations, distorting their magnetic sense and leaving them unable to navigate properly. To prevent this, hatcheries should use non-magnetic materials like aluminum or fiberglass and regularly test the water. Three sources, including ScienceDaily and the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, support the importance of preventing magnetic interference in fish populations.

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