Application of chemical cues to manipulate adult sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) behavior is among the options considered for new sea lamprey control techniques in the Laurentian Great Lakes. A male mating pheromone component, 7a,12a,24-trihydroxy-3-one-5a-cholan-24-sulfate (3kPZS), lures ovulated female sea lamprey upstream into baited traps in experimental contexts with no odorant competition. A critical knowledge gap is whether this single pheromone component influences adult sea lamprey behavior in management contexts containing free-ranging sea lampreys. A solution of 3kPZS to reach a final in-stream concentration of 10-12 mol·L-1 was applied to eight Michigan streams at existing sea lamprey traps over 3 years, and catch rates were compared between paired 3kPZS-baited and unbaited traps. 3kPZS-baited traps captured significantly more sexually immature and mature sea lampreys, and overall yearly trapping efficiency within a stream averaged 10% higher during years when 3kPZS was applied. Video analysis of a trap funnel showed that the likelihood of sea lamprey trap entry after trap encounter was higher when the trap was 3kPZS baited. Our approach serves as a model for the development of similar control tools for sea lamprey and other aquatic invaders.
Additional Publication Details
A synthesized mating pheromone component increases adult sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) trap capture in management scenarios
Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences