Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

A Diagram of the Life Stages of Pacific Lamprey

Detailed Description

A diagram of the life stages of Pacific lamprey. Adults spawn in freshwater streams, then the larvae live in sediments. Juveniles then migrate to the ocean. After a life in the ocean they return to streams to spawn and die. Pacific lampreys accumulate contaminants while burrowed in sediments filter feeding for the first several years of their life cycle. They can act as vectors for contaminants into freshwater and marine food webs, and to humans, during their migration to the ocean and back to freshwater streams to spawn. Diagram from Nilsen and others, 2015.


Public Domain.