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Age and growth of round gobies in Lake Huron: Implications for food web dynamics

September 1, 2016

Although the round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) has become established throughout the Laurentian Great Lakes, information is scarce on spatial variation in round goby growth between and within lakes. Based on a sample of 754 specimens captured in 2014, age, growth, and mortality of round gobies at four locations in Lake Huron were assessed via otolith analysis. Total length (TL) of round gobies ranged from 44 to 111 mm for Saginaw Bay, from 45 to 115 mm for Rockport, from 50 to 123 mm for Hammond Bay, and from 51 to 118 mm for Thunder Bay. Estimated ages of round gobies ranged from 2 to 5 years for Saginaw Bay, from 2 to 6 years for Rockport, and from 2 to 7 years for Hammond Bay and Thunder Bay. Sex-specific, body–otolith relationships were used to back-calculate total lengths at age, which were then fitted to von Bertalanffy growth models. For each sex, round goby growth showed significant spatial variation among the four locations within Lake Huron. At all four locations in Lake Huron, males grew significantly faster than females and attained a larger asymptotic length than females. Annual mortality rate estimates were high (62 to 85%), based on catch-curve analysis, suggesting that round gobies may be under predatory control in Lake Huron.

Publication Year 2016
Title Age and growth of round gobies in Lake Huron: Implications for food web dynamics
DOI 10.1016/j.jglr.2016.08.010
Authors You J. Duan, Charles P. Madenjian, Cong X. Xie, James S. Diana, Timothy P. O'Brien, Ying M. Zhao, Ji X. He, Steve A. Farha, Bin Huo
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Great Lakes Research
Index ID 70176537
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Great Lakes Science Center