Coastal Sea Lamprey Migration in Hammond Bay
Project Title
A field investigation of the potential to control sea lampreys through pheromone mediated redistribution of migrants in the great Lakes
Project Code
Project Duration
April 2010 - July 2011
Project Description
The sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) is an invasive parasite in the Laurentian Great Lakes that has devastated native fish communities. Control efforts focus primarily on lampricide application and have substantially reduced their negative effects by killing larval sea lamprey before they go out to the lake to parasitize other fishes. However, sea lamprey populations remain above target levels and despite much being known about how adult sea lampreys migrate when in the river, little is known about how they catch prey in the lakes or how they return to rivers to mature and spawn. We carried out a two year study to learn about the near shore phase of the migration. First we identified what behaviors and information migratory immature sea lamprey use to move from the coast into rivers. Secondly, we attempted to manipulate their behavior through the addition of a known odor lure (attractive pheromone) to see if we can bias more animals into entering a stream with bad spawning habitat or a stream that is easier to treat.
Management Benefits
Participating Organizations
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