Feasibility of acoustic telemetry for quantifying habitat use and dispersal by juvenile lake whitefish
September 2023 - September 2024
The biology and ecology of juvenile lake whitefish after they leave shallow habitats the first summer after hatch is largely a mystery. Few juvenile whitefish are caught in bottom trawls, suggesting that they may disperse long distances and are not tightly schooled. The lack of understanding of understanding of juvenile whitefish presents a problem to fishery managers that desire to know if poor recruitment is due to bottlenecks in the larval and juvenile life stages. We are using acoustic telemetry to inform managers on the dispersal and habitat of juvenile whitefish once they leave shallow water habitats in the summer. Use of digestion tags, which change their emitted code when consumed by a predator, to track the fish will also provide estimates of predation mortality of stocked age-0 whitefish.