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Mink predation on brown trout in a Black Hills stream

June 1, 2016

In the early 2000’s, declines in the brown trout (Salmo trutta) fishery in Rapid Creek, South Dakota, caused concern for anglers and fisheries managers. We conducted a radio telemetry study in 2010 and 2011 to identify predation mortality associated with mink, using hatchery-reared (2010) or wild (2011) brown trout. Estimated predation rates by mink (Mustela vison) on radio-tagged brown trout were 30% for hatchery fish and 32% for wild fish. Size frequency analysis revealed that the size distribution of brown trout lost to predation was similar to that of other, radio-tagged brown trout. In both years, a higher proportion of predation mortality (83–92%) occurred during spring, consistent with seasonal fish consumption by mink. Predation by mink appeared to be a significant source of brown trout mortality in our study.

Publication Year 2016
Title Mink predation on brown trout in a Black Hills stream
Authors Jacob L. Davis, Jerry W. Wilhite, Steven R. Chipps
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title The Prairie Naturalist
Index ID 70193682
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Coop Res Unit Leetown