Sea lamprey and lake trout relationship to salmon

Sea Lampreys and Fish by jalen gross on Prezi

sea lamprey and lake trout relationship to salmon

The frequency of fresh sea lamprey marks observed on lake trout from strongly related to the frequency of sea lamprey attacks observed on salmon and trout. May 29, The fish are being harmed because Parasitic lampreys prey on adult fish by attaching symbiotic relationships on Sea Lampreys and Fish. Oct 29, Common name: Sea Lamprey (lake lamprey, lamprey eel, on a large variety of deepwater fishes such as salmon, rainbow trout, whitefish, chubs, . manpower and related costs; reduced dependency on lampricides and.

These declines caused economic devastation and a severe imbalance of predator and prey species. The fish populations of the lakes have changed dramatically in the 20th century; changes were wrought at first by overfishing and then by the introduction of exotic species. Most notable of the latter was the parasitic sea lamprey, which probably entered the lakes via the Erie Canal and spread following the completion of the new Welland Ship Canal in The sea lamprey virtually eliminated lake trout from Lakes Huron and Michigan.

Great Lakes Fishery Commission - Sea Lamprey

Canadian and American government programs, instituted in the s, have reduced the number of lampreys. The decline in the lake-trout population allowed another invader, the alewife, to flourish, unconstrained by any natural predators. Alewives entered the lakes through the St.

sea lamprey and lake trout relationship to salmon

Lawrence Seaway and the Welland Ship Canal. Alewife populations have been brought under control by the coho salmon, imported into the lakes in the s, which has become the dominant predator and an important sport fish.

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Without sea lamprey control, efforts to reestablish lake trout failed. Given the scale of this ecological disaster, the Great Lakes Fishery Commission was established in to control sea lamprey and restore lake trout populations. Priority was given to Lake Superior, since lake trout populations had not been completely eliminated there.

After scientists tested more than 6, chemicals, they determined 3-trifluoromethylnitrophenol TFM the most suitable and developed it for field use.

  • Sea Lamprey
  • Sea Lamprey: The Battle Continues
  • Great Lakes Fishery Commission

Shortly after TFM application to larval populations, sea lamprey numbers began to decline in Lake Superior, allowing for the reintroduction of lake trout through plantings of hatchery-reared fish and protection of remnant stocks. These field programs were later assumed by State and tribal management agencies and used as a model to develop assessments in other jurisdictions.

Ongoing analysis of these important field data led to the decision in to discontinue stocking federally produced hatchery lake trout in most areas of the lake.

Results indicated that lake trout restoration is well on its way in most areas of Lake Superior and that protection of self-reproducing wild lake trout populations from over-exploitation and sea-lamprey predation is the primary strategy to foster further restoration.

While sea lampreys resemble eels, they are not related and are set apart by their unique mouth: How do sea lampreys kill fish?

Introduced Species Summary Project

Sea lampreys attach to fish with their suction cup mouth then dig their teeth into flesh for grip. In their native Atlantic Ocean, thanks to co-evolution with fish there, sea lampreys are parasites that typically do not kill their host.

sea lamprey and lake trout relationship to salmon

In the Great Lakes, where no such co-evolutionary link exists, sea lampreys act as predators, with each individual capable of killing up to 40 pounds more than 20 kilograms of fish over their month feeding period. Host fish in the Great Lakes are often unable to survive sea lamprey parasitism, either dying directly from an attack or from infections in the wound after an attack.


Host fish that survive an attack often suffer from weight loss and a decline in health and condition. Where are sea lampreys found?

sea lamprey and lake trout relationship to salmon

The first recorded observation of a sea lamprey in the Great Lakes was in in Lake Ontario. Niagara Falls served as a natural barrier, confining sea lampreys to Lake Ontario and preventing them from entering the remaining four Great Lakes. However, in the late s and early s, improvements to the Welland Canal, which bypasses Niagara Falls and provides a shipping connection between Lakes Ontario and Erie, allowed sea lampreys access to the rest of the Great Lakes.

Within just a short time, sea lampreys spread throughout the system: Sea lampreys were able to thrive once they invaded the Great Lakes because of the availability of excellent spawning and larval habitat, an abundance of host fish, a lack of predators, and their high reproductive potential—a single female can produce as many aseggs!