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The lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush) was important to the human settlement of each of the Great Lakes, and underwent catastrophic collapses in each lake in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The timing of lake trout stock collapses were different in each lake, as were the causes of the collapses, and have been the subject of much scientific inquiry and debate. The purpose of this chapter is to summarize and review pertinent information relating historical changes in Great Lakes lake trout stocks, binational efforts to restore those stocks, and progress toward stock restoration. This presentation attempts to generalize patterns across the Great Lakes, rather than to focus within each lake. Lake specific analyses have been used to understand lake specific causes and effects, but there is continuing debate about some of these causes and effects. A basinwide review may suggest mechanisms for observed changes that are not evident by lake specific analysis.
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Lake trout in the Great Lakes: Basin-wide stock collapse and binational restoration