Anders Koed and Kim Aarestrup tagging eel in Greece. Photo: David Righton.

Two new professors in the biology and management of migratory fish

Thursday 28 Jun 18


Kim Aarestrup
DTU Aqua
+45 35 88 31 42


Anders Koed
Deputy Director / Professor
DTU Aqua
+45 35 88 31 46

Kim Aarestrup and Anders Koed have been appointed professors at DTU within the area of diadromous fish, i.e. fish such as eel and salmon that migrate between fresh and salt water

DTU Aqua’s two newly appointed professors Kim Aarestrup and Anders Koed have much in common in terms of their respective research careers. They both hold Master’s degrees in biology from Aarhus University as well as PhD degrees, and they were both employed as research assistants at DTU Aqua in Silkeborg in the mid-1990s. Here, they were both appointed researchers in 2001, and a few years later were both made senior researchers – and they have now both been appointed professors.

Kim Aarestrup and Anders Koed’s research careers may look very similar on the surface, but they actually have very different though complementary academic focus areas. Kim Aarestrup has thus been made a professor specialized in the behaviour and migration of diadromous fish, while Anders Koed’s area of expertise is management, stock assessment and ecology of diadromous fish.

Diadromous fish are fish that move between fresh and salt water as a part of their life cycle. The most important species in Denmark are eel, salmon and sea trout. These fish play a major role in the recreational fishery, and in some cases are also significant for the economies of local communities. For example, Anders Koed’s research has shown that the successful re-establishment of the wild salmon stocks in river Skjern Å in western Jutland contributes on average DKK 14.6 million per year (2014) to the local economy, through fishing tourism, equipment purchase, transport, meals, accommodation, etc.

Due to their migratory activities, diadromous fish have an interesting biology and ecology, and researchers are interested in following them as they move between different bodies of water. As part of his research, Kim Aarestrup has helped to develop the use of electronic tags for fish. Among other things, he has tagged eel and salmon with satellite pop-off tags that continually collect information about the surroundings that an individual fish journeys through during its movements, e.g. temperature and depth. The tag later pops-off the fish at a pre-determined time, floats to the surface, and the data is transmitted to the researchers via satellite.

Kim Aarestrup. Photo: Jan NielsenAbout Kim Aarestrup

Kim Aarestrup holds a Master’s degree in biology from Aarhus University and a PhD degree from Aalborg University. He was employed as a research assistant at DTU Aqua in Silkeborg in 1996 (then the Danish Institute for Fisheries and Marine Research), and in 2001 became a researcher and then a senior researcher in 2006. He has also completed a diploma in business economics from Aarhus University.

Kim Aarestrup’s research has focused on describing and understanding the migration of fish. In particular, he has focused on factors which have an impact on fish migration, for example their genetic and physiological status, but he has also looked at the effect of dams, hydroelectric power stations and other obstacles to migrating fish. He has been involved in developing electronic tags for fish, which make it possible to follow fish during their migration. Kim Aarestrup has made significant contributions to Danish and international research projects that have resulted in new knowledge about eel, trout and salmon migration as well as a number of high-profile publications.

Anders Koed. Photo: Jan NielsenAbout Anders Koed

Anders Koed holds a Master’s degree in biology from Aarhus University and a PhD degree from the University of Copenhagen. He was employed as a research assistant at DTU Aqua in Silkeborg in 1994 (then the Danish Institute for Fisheries and Marine Research). In 2001, he was employed as a researcher, and in 2005 he was appointed senior researcher. From 2007–2008, he worked as a project manager at Orbicon A/S, but returned to the department in 2008 as a senior researcher, and was also appointed head of the Section for Freshwater Fisheries and Ecology. Since 2014 he has also been Deputy Director of DTU Aqua.

The main focus of Anders Koed’s research is the interactions between predator and prey, where and when fish migrate, as well as the significance of natural and man-made obstacles in streams for fish migration. Through his research and consultancy, Anders Koed has played a key role in the work to rebuild the stocks of wild salmon in Skjern Å and other rivers in western Jutland.
26 NOVEMBER 2020