Brown Trout On Native Brook Trout
There is a long
history of our attempts to "improve" native fisheries by stocking
familiar non-native sport fish. This has been especially true with he
various trout species that have been mingled freely in waters around
the world. While historically we believed this would produce better
fishing opportunities, today we realize that many of these stockings
were disastrous for our native trout.
Recognizing that native trout
are badly harmed by the stocking on non-native trout, many
conservationists and fisheries managers now oppose this proactive.
However, there are still many places in which non-natives are being
stocked on top of native trout.
In a recent post on Ted William's blog, this
issue is fully explored, particularly in terms of Trout Unlimited's
role in promoting stocking of brown trout on top of native brook trout.
This is a very interesting discussion of all aspects of this issue. Read More
The (Not So) Great Lakes?
America's Great Lakes have been the subject of a lot of
invasive species talk over the past couple of years. However, perhaps
too much of the discussion has been about Asian carp while other
problem species don't receive as much attention. In August this changed
to some extent as a number of news stories report.
Lake Erie was once badly polluted by chemicals and
wastes that were discharged into the Lake. After decades of difficult and
expensive action, Lake Erie became a recreational destination and many
anglers flocked to hire charter boats to take them fishing for a host
of prized species. Today, Lake Erie is facing a complete biological
collapse triggered by the Zebra and Quagga mussels that infest the lake
in uncountable numbers. In an article in OnEarth
entitled Lake Erie
Death Watch, author Barry Yeoman provides a thorough
examination of the problems that Lake is currently facing. This is a
great read. Read More
Just a decade ago, the Lake Huron fishery was ruled by
king salmon. From Lexington in the south to the Straits of Mackinac,
charter captains charged eager anglers hundreds of dollars to catch
hard-fighting, great-tasting kings until coolers were brimming with
fish. Today, southern Lake Huron is virtually devoid of king salmon,
thanks to food web changes wrought by invasive species like zebra and
quagga mussels. The salmon, simply put, have been starved out.
Officials estimate that each port city on southern and central Lake
Huron has lost more than $1 million in annual revenue that was
generated by salmon fishing. Read More
Rae commercial fishing boat was recently moved to Alaska and for
the first time since the 1800s, there are no commercial fishing boats
on Lake Michigan operating out of Milwaukee. The boats are gone because
the fish are gone. A victim of the quagga mussels that smother the bottom
of the lake - their numbers are estimated at
900 trillion. Milwaukee has a long commercial fishing history. In fact,
in 1938 there were at least 2,000 jobs in the industry and now they are
all gone. The result of the mussel invasion. Read More
Asian carp are threatening the Great Lakes from the
Mississippi River which has provided a lot of attention on the problem
of the artificial connection that Chicago built to connect Lake Michigan
with the Mississippi system. After losing their court challenge to
close this connection, Attorney Generals from 6 Great Lakes states ave
asked their counterpoints in 27 other states to join their fight. They
point to an Army Corps of Engineers report that identifies 40 invasive
species which are in the Great Lakes and could travel into the
Mississippi. They very rightly point out that these species have the
potential to do serious harm to the entire Mississippi drainage.
A Prominent Bass Angler Calls For Better Cleaning
Verne Wagner is a well known Minnesota
bass tournament angler as well as being a contributer to the
Minneapolis Star Tribune. He posted an opinion blog that
aggressively laid out the case that bass tournament anglers need to be
leaders in promoting boat cleaning. His article was widely distributed
on bulletin boards and fishing forums during the month and many
interesting comments were posted in many places. Rather than link to
the original article, I am linking to a representative message thread
that covers the range of reactions to Verne's call for cleaning. Note
that the first entry in this post contains the full article from Verne.
Asian Carp Jobs - Boon or Bane?
carp now inhabit some waters in almost unimaginable numbers.
Anyone who has viewed a video of large carp leaping out of the
water has just a sense of how many of these invaders are present. This
density has led to a lot of interest in finding a way to sell the carp
to encourage harvest. We have previously reported on some of the
efforts to establish export businesses for selling carp and there is an
emerging market for the product.
The advantage of
creating carp jobs is well stated in an article by the New York Times
that examines the emerging Asian carp industry. The article discusses
the millions of dollars that are being invested in creating the
infrastructure needed to support a large scale carp industry.Read
On the surface it seems like a great idea to use
commercial markets to achieve carp reduction. However, there is growing
concern that creating an industry based on an invader might not be a
good idea. The main concern is that there will be no jobs unless there
are carp and there will be many who will oppose the elimination of carp
because it will cost jobs. Some of the arguments against creating carp
jobs are well articulated in a recent letter to the editor in Muskegon,
Mich. Read More
State by State
- Beach attendant Ellie Stone keeps a stash of Band-Aids
in a box next to her chair. She knows from experience that swimmers
often cut their hands and feet on zebra mussels stuck to the rocks at
the Lake Champlain beach..
- The Finger Lakes are being threatened by the recent
discovery of Hydrilla, an extremely aggressive invasive plant.
More At the same time, officials continue to battle the Asian clam invasion in the Finger Lakes. Read More
- Every summer, two Chelan County park maintenance guys crank
up the Aquarius Systems aquatic-weed harvester to cut and remove tons
of Eurasian milfoil at parks and boat launches dotting the Columbia
- Flowering Rush has invaded Flathead Lake and River where it disrupts
swimming and water skiing, provides habitat for the snails that host
the parasites responsible for swimmer's itch, clogs docks and
boat slips and fouls the boat propellers that help to spread
it. Yet it flies under most people's radar - a fact that should be
alarming to all.
Colorado - After
detecting two potentially destructive invasive species in Eleven Mile
Reservoir, Colorado Parks and Wildlife will require mandatory
inspections on all incoming and outgoing boats to prevent spreading the problem.
It's taken tens of thousands of boat inspections and a lot of
diligence, but Idaho's effort to keep quagga mussels from invading has paid off so far.
The state has conducted more than 40,000 boat inspections since March
and intercepted 24 boats harboring quagga mussels. Read
- VHS fish disease has not spread to new waters in 2011, a result state
fisheries and invasive species officials credit to anglers and others
following rules to prevent spreading the virus. Read
Nevada - After months of testing, the Bureau
of Reclamation and Nevada Department of Wildlife announced quagga
mussels have been linked to Lahontan Reservoir. The BOR found quagga
veligers, or larvae, during testing in April, and subsequent tests have
indicated the destructive mussels are present. Read
- As boat inspections become more common, some anglers are going to
great lengths in protest. There was an especially disturbing incident
that took place during August.
Invasive Species Poetry Contest Winners Announced
A call for
creative prose brought in nearly 100 entries to the Tampa Bay Estuary
Program’s first-ever Invasive Species Poetry Contest. The theme of
uninvited plants and critters taking over Florida’s native habitats
sparked a chord with the public, entries were submitted by residents
ranging in age from 6 to 84!
“I was very happy to hear
that a lot of children were interested in this, and some schools even
did it as a project,” said Christine Jamesson, 57, winner in the adult
category. “I think that is fabulous because once kids get an idea and
latch on to something – they just take it a run with it.”
verse from humorous to serious described invasives from bufo toads and
Burmese pythons to lionfish, lovebugs, Brazilian pepper and air
potatoes. The judges, representing a cross-section of backgrounds, were
entertained by poetry in forms ranging from rhymes to haikus, and even
a rap. One adult and two junior winners were announced. They will each
receive a $250 cash prize. Read More Including The Winning Poems
A selection of stories not
directly related to aquatic invasives.
Are new England's
iconic maple trees at risk? If a beetle has its way, the answer may be
yes. Results from the first study of the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB)
in forests show that the invasive insect can easily spread from
tree-lined city streets to neighboring forests. Read
Wild horses are not what most people think of when
they hear invasive species. Yet, in some areas of the west, wild horse
populations have grown so large that they are having a significant
impact on native species and habitat. This has led to annual wild horse
roundups conducted by government agencies. However, there are opponents
who argue for leaving the horses alone. Read
Butterfly bush, also known as summer lilac
(Buddleia), is a very popular garden plant in the Pacific Northwest.
Photos of its beautiful blossoms have graced many-a-page of slick
gardening magazines, nursery catalogs, television programs and
garden-center displays. It is a fast-growing, robust, easy-to-grow
shrub that attracts a wide variety of butterflies.Unfortunately, this
popular plant can be a very aggressive invasive shrub.
The inspector general overseeing the U.S. Interior
Department issued a report late last month warning that the 4,880-acre
former nuclear-trigger factory at Rocky Flats is overrun with invasive weeds that
could destroy the unique biology that served as the reason for
establishing the refuge in the first place.The invasive species raise
the specter of nuclear contaminants spreading to surface water, the
report says. Read More