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Management efforts to rehabilitate lake trout Salvelinus namaycush in Lake Superior have been successful and the recent increase in their numbers has led to interest in measuring biomass of pelagic prey fish species important to these predators. Lake Superior cisco Coregonus artedi currently support roe fisheries and determining the sustainability of these fisheries is an important management issue. We conducted acoustic and midwater trawl surveys of the western arm of Lake Superior during three periods: summer (July-August), October, and November 2006 to determine if a single survey can be timed to estimate biomass of both prey fish and spawning cisco. We evaluated our methods by comparing observed trawl catches...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Estimating the selectivity patterns of various fishing gears is a critical component of fisheries stock assessment due to the difficulty in obtaining representative samples from most gears. We used short-term recoveries (n = 3587) of tagged red drum Sciaenops ocellatus to directly estimate age- and length-based selectivity patterns using generalized linear models. The most parsimonious models were selected using AIC, and standard deviations were estimated using simulations. Selectivity of red drum was dependent upon the regulation period in which the fish was caught, the gear used to catch the fish (i.e., hook-and-line, gill nets, pound nets), and the fate of the fish upon recovery (i.e., harvested or released);...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Fisheries management has evolved from reservoir to watershed management, creating a need to simultaneously gather information within and across interacting reservoirs. However, costs to gather information on the fishing effort on multiple reservoirs using traditional creel methodology are often prohibitive. Angler posts about reservoirs online provide a unique medium to test hypotheses on the distribution of fishing pressure. We show that the activity on an online fishing social network is related to fishing effort and can be used to facilitate management goals. We searched the Nebraska Fish and Game Association Fishing Forum for all references from April 2009 to December 2010 to 19 reservoirs that comprise the...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Population availability and vessel avoidance effects on hydroacoustic abundance estimates may be scale dependent; therefore, it is important to evaluate these biases across systems. We performed an inter-ship comparison survey to determine the effect of vessel size, day-night period, depth, and environmental gradients on walleye (Sander vitreus) density estimates in Lake Erie, an intermediate-scaled system. Consistent near-bottom depth distributions coupled with horizontal fish movements relative to vessel paths indicated avoidance behavior contributed to higher walleye densities from smaller vessels in shallow water (i.e., <15 m), although the difference decreased with increasing depth. Diel bank migrations in...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Our findings reveal evidence for skipped spawning in a potamodromous cyprinid, humpback chub (HBC; Gila cypha ). Using closed robust design mark-recapture models, we found, on average, spawning HBC transition to the skipped spawning state () with a probability of 0.45 (95% CRI (i.e. credible interval): 0.10, 0.80) and skipped spawners remain in the skipped spawning state () with a probability of 0.60 (95% CRI: 0.26, 0.83), yielding an average spawning cycle of every 2.12 years, conditional on survival. As a result, migratory skipped spawners are unavailable for detection during annual sampling events. If availability is unaccounted for, survival and detection probability estimates will be biased. Therefore, we...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Hydroacoustic sampling of low-density fish in shallow water can lead to low sample sizes of naturally variable target strength (TS) estimates, resulting in both sparse and variable data. Increasing maximum beam compensation (BC) beyond conventional values (i.e., 3 dB beam width) can recover more targets during data analysis; however, data quality decreases near the acoustic beam edges. We identified the optimal balance between data quantity and quality with increasing BC using a standard sphere calibration, and we quantified the effect of BC on fish track variability, size structure, and density estimates of Lake Erie walleye (Sander vitreus). Standard sphere mean TS estimates were consistent with theoretical values...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Delineation of stock structure is important for understanding the ecology and management of many fish populations, particularly those with wide-ranging distributions and high levels of harvest. Southern flounder (Paralichthys lethostigma) is a popular commercial and recreational species along the southeast Atlantic coast and Gulf of Mexico, USA. Recent studies have provided genetic and otolith morphology evidence that the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean stocks differ. Using age and growth data from four states (Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, and North Carolina) we expanded upon the traditional von Bertalanffy model in order to compare growth rates of putative geographic stocks of southern flounder. We improved...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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This study evaluated the immediate physiological response of wild rainbow trout to catch-and-release angling in the Alagnak River, southwest Alaska. Information was recorded on individual rainbow trout (n = 415) captured by angling including landing time and the time required to remove hooks (angling duration), the time to anesthetize fish in clove oil and withdraw blood, fish length and weight, and water temperature at capture locations. Plasma cortisol, glucose, ions (sodium, potassium, chloride), and lactate were analyzed to determine the effects of angling duration, fish size, body condition, and temperature. Levels of plasma ions did not change significantly during the observed physiological response and levels...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Spatial layout of waterbodies and waterbody size can affect a creel clerk’s ability to intercept anglers for interviews and to accurately count anglers, which will affect the accuracy and precision of estimates of effort and catch. This study aimed to quantify angling effort and catch across a spatially complex system of 19 small (<100 ha) lakes, the Fremont lakes. Total (±SE) angling effort (hours) on individual lakes ranged from 0 (0) to 7,137 (305). Bank anglers utilized 18 of the 19 lakes, and their mean (±SE) trip lengths (hours) ranged from 0.80 (0.31) to 7.75 (6.75), depending on the waterbody. In contrast, boat anglers utilized 14 of the 19 lakes, and their trip lengths ranged from 1.39 (0.24) to 4.25 (0.71),...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Because it is not possible to identify species with echosounders alone, trawling is widely used as a method for collecting species and size composition data for allocating acoustic fish density estimates to species or size groups. In the Laurentian Great Lakes, data from midwater trawls are commonly used for such allocations. However, there are no rules for how much midwater trawling effort is required to adequately describe species and size composition of the pelagic fish communities in these lakes, so the balance between acoustic sampling effort and trawling effort has been unguided. We used midwater trawl data collected between 1986 and 2008 in lakes Michigan and Huron and a variety of analytical techniques to...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Sharp reductions in forage fish populations in Lake Michigan have raised concerns about the continued ability of the forage stocks to support large populations of lake trout and other salmonid predators. There was a need for a more comprehensive and accurate estimate of forage fish abundance and distribution to evaluate these concerns. In response, cooperative diel surveys of the Lake Michigan forage species were conducted in late summer 1987 and spring 1989 with acoustics, midwater and bottom trawls.
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Controlling the invasion front of aquatic nuisance species is of high importance to resource managers. We tested the hypothesis that adult sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus), a destructive invasive species in the Laurentian Great Lakes, would exhibit behavioral avoidance to dual-frequency pulsed direct current generated by vertical electrodes and that the electric field would not injure or kill sea lamprey or non-target fish. Laboratory and in-stream experiments demonstrated that the electric field blocked sea lamprey migration and directed sea lamprey into traps. Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and white sucker (Catostomus commersoni), species that migrate sympatrically with sea lamprey, avoided the electric...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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The Lake Michigan fish community has been monitored since the 1960s with bottom trawls, and since the late 1980s with acoustics and midwater trawls. These sampling tools are limited to different habitats: bottom trawls sample fish near bottom in areas with smooth substrates, and acoustic methods sample fish throughout the water column above all substrate types. We compared estimates of fish densities and species richness from daytime bottom trawling with those estimated from night-time acoustic and midwater trawling at a range of depths in northeastern Lake Michigan in summer 1995. We examined estimates of total fish density as well as densities of alewife Alosa pseudoharengus (Wilson), bloater Coregonus hoyi (Gill),...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Bayesian methods have been proposed to estimate optimal escapement goals, using both knowledge about physical determinants of salmon productivity and stock-recruitment data. The Bayesian approach has several advantages over many traditional methods for estimating stock productivity: it allows integration of information from diverse sources and provides a framework for decision-making that takes into account uncertainty reflected in the data. However, results can be critically dependent on details of implementation of this approach. For instance, unintended and unwarranted confidence about stock-recruitment relationships can arise if the range of relationships examined is too narrow, if too few discrete alternatives...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Separate assessment of young-of-year (YOY) and yearling-and-older (YAO) fish is desirable from both ecological and management perspectives. Acoustic assessments provide information on fish population size structure in the target strength (TS) distribution, but interpretation of TS distributions must be done carefully, as single age groups can produce multiple TS modes. We assessed the ability of in situ TS distributions to identify Lake Champlain rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax) age groups in June, July, and September of 2001 using mobile and stationary surveys, knowledge of vertical distribution preferences, and predicted TS from trawl catches. YAO rainbow smelt (93-179 mm total length) had wide TS distributions...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Acoustic methods are used to estimate the density of pelagic fish in large lakes with results of midwater trawling used to assign species composition. Apportionment in lakes having mixed species can be challenging because only a small fraction of the water sampled acoustically is sampled with trawl gear. Here we describe a new method where single echo detections (SEDs) are assigned to species based on classification tree models developed from catch data that separate species based on fish size and the spatial habitats they occupy. During the summer of 2011, we conducted a spatially-balanced lake-wide acoustic and midwater trawl survey of Lake Superior. A total of 51 sites in four bathymetric depth strata (0–30 m,...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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Population-level reproductive success (recruitment) of many fish populations is characterized by high inter-annual variation and related to annual variation in key environmental factors (e.g., climate). When such environmental factors are annually correlated across broad spatial scales, spatially separated populations may display recruitment synchrony (i.e., the Moran effect). We investigated inter-annual (1966–2008) variation in yellow perch (Perca flavescens, Percidae) recruitment using 16 datasets describing populations located in four of the five Laurentian Great Lakes (Erie, Huron, Michigan, and Ontario) and Lake St. Clair. We indexed relative year class strength using catch-curve residuals for each year-class...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research
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A primary motivating factor on the decision to harvest a fish among consumptive-orientated anglers is the size of the fish. There is likely a cost-benefit trade-off for harvest of individual fish that is size and species dependent, which should produce a logistic-type response of fish fate (release or harvest) as a function of fish size and species. We define the self-imposed length limit as the length at which a captured fish had a 50% probability of being harvested, which was selected because it marks the length of the fish where the probability of harvest becomes greater than the probability of release. We assessed the influences of fish size, catch per unit effort, size distribution of caught fish, and creel...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Fisheries Research


map background search result map search result map Use of classification trees to apportion single echo detections to species: Application to the pelagic fish community of Lake Superior Self-imposed length limits in recreational fisheries Relationship between mid-water trawling effort and catch composition uncertainty in two large lakes (Huron and Michigan) dominated by alosines, osmerids, and coregonines Use of classification trees to apportion single echo detections to species: Application to the pelagic fish community of Lake Superior Self-imposed length limits in recreational fisheries Relationship between mid-water trawling effort and catch composition uncertainty in two large lakes (Huron and Michigan) dominated by alosines, osmerids, and coregonines