Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Revealing migration and reproductive habitat of invasive fish under an active population suppression program

January 28, 2020

Endemic species face a variety of threats including predation from non‐native invaders. In some cases, however, invasive species can be managed by directly suppressing populations, and tracking technologies that allow researchers to identify movement patterns and aggregations representative of the population can facilitate suppression activities. In Yellowstone Lake (Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming), invasive lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush ) have been the target of a population suppression program for over two decades. For this form of management, the reproductive period is particularly important because fish migrate to and from spawning grounds. From 2011 to 2014, adult lake trout (n = 317) in Yellowstone Lake were tracked using acoustic biotelemetry. After controlling for spatial and temporal dependency in the data, total abundance of unique individuals was estimated where migratory trajectories occurred at confirmed spawning sites. Aggregations and migratory trajectories were further estimated at locations where spawning had not previously been observed. Across years, the greatest number of individuals was observed along a migration corridor in the southwestern area of the lake. Novel strategies for analyzing acoustic telemetry data provided insights into the behavior of an invasive fish species. By betraying the positions of conspecifics, tagged fish revealed potentially important reproductive habitats and migration corridors that warranted further investigation as possible sites for population suppression.

Publication Year 2020
Title Revealing migration and reproductive habitat of invasive fish under an active population suppression program
DOI 10.1111/csp2.119
Authors Lee F. G. Gutowsky, Jason G. Romine, Nicholas A. Heredia, Patricia E. Bigelow, Michael J. Parsley, Philip T. Sandstrom, Cory D. Suski, Andy J. Danylchuk, Steven J. Cooke, Robert E. Gresswell
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Conservation Science and Practice
Index ID 70211975
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center; Western Fisheries Research Center