Selectivity evaluation for two experimental gill-net configurations used to sample Lake Erie walleyes

North American Journal of Fisheries Management
By: , and 

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Abstract

We used length frequencies of captured walleyes Sander vitreus to indirectly estimate and compare selectivity between two experimental gill-net configurations used to sample fish in Lake Erie: (1) a multifilament configuration currently used by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) with stretched-measure mesh sizes ranging from 51 to 127 mm and a constant filament diameter (0.37 mm); and (2) a monofilament configuration with mesh sizes ranging from 38 to 178 mm and varying filament diameter (range = 0.20–0.33 mm). Paired sampling with the two configurations revealed that the catch of walleyes smaller than 250 mm and larger than 600 mm was greater in the monofilament configuration than in the multifilament configuration, but the catch of 250–600-mm fish was greater in the multifilament configuration. Binormal selectivity functions yielded the best fit to observed walleye catches for both gill-net configurations based on model deviances. Incorporation of deviation terms in the binormal selectivity functions (i.e., to relax the assumption of geometric similarity) further improved the fit to observed catches. The final fitted selectivity functions produced results similar to those from the length-based catch comparisons: the monofilament configuration had greater selectivity for small and large walleyes and the multifilament configuration had greater selectivity for mid-sized walleyes. Computer simulations that incorporated the fitted binormal selectivity functions indicated that both nets were likely to result in some bias in age composition estimates and that the degree of bias would ultimately be determined by the underlying condition, mortality rate, and growth rate of the Lake Erie walleye population. Before the ODNR switches its survey gear, additional comparisons of the different gill-net configurations, such as fishing the net pairs across a greater range of depths and at more locations in the lake, should be conducted to maintain congruence in the fishery-independent survey time series.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Selectivity evaluation for two experimental gill-net configurations used to sample Lake Erie walleyes
Series title North American Journal of Fisheries Management
DOI 10.1080/02755947.2011.623758
Volume 31
Issue 5
Year Published 2011
Language English
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Publisher location Philadelphia, PA
Contributing office(s) Great Lakes Science Center
Description 11 p.
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title North American Journal of Fisheries Management
First page 832
Last page 842
Other Geospatial Lake Erie
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