Spawning Cisco investigations in Canada waters of Lake Superior during 2007

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Abstract

Cisco Coregonus artedi form pre-spawning aggregations in Lake Superior during November with the bulk of spawning occurring during late November through early December (Dryer and Beil 1964). Eggs are broadcast into open water (Smith 1956) with fertilized eggs settling to the lakebed (Dryer and Beil 1964). Peak hatching occurs the following May (United States Geological Survey – Great Lakes Science Center, GLSC, unpublished data). Interannual variability in year class strength is high, but tends to be synchronous across different regions of Lake Superior (Bronte et al. 2003). November 2005 sampling of Thunder Bay showed 14 year-classes were present with the oldest fish being from the 1984 year-class (Yule et al. 2008). The ciscoes sampled were predominantly from five year classes that hatched during 1988, 1989, 1990, 1998, and 2003. These same strong year-classes were found in the western arm of Lake Superior during November 2006 (GLSC, unpublished data). Growth is rapid in the first few years of life with minimal growth after age-8 (Yule et al. 2008). Ciscoes exceeding 250 mm total length (TL) are typically sexually mature (Yule et al. 2006b, 2008). Thunder Bay ciscoes have high annual survival with rates for females and males averaging 0.80 and 0.75, respectively; females have higher rates of fishing-induced mortality compared to males but lower rates of natural mortality (Yule et al. 2008). Some Lake Superior stocks are currently commercially fished with the bulk of harvest occurring during November when fishers target females for their roe. The bulk of fish are harvested from Thunder Bay using suspended gillnets with mesh sizes ranging from 79-89 mm stretch measure. Ciscoes younger then age-5 make up a very small proportion (<0.1%) of the harvest (Yule, et al. 2008).

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Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Unnumbered Series
Title Spawning Cisco investigations in Canada waters of Lake Superior during 2007
DOI 10.3133/70142180
Year Published 2008
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Contributing office(s) Great Lakes Science Center
Description 32 p.
Country Canada
Other Geospatial Thunder Bay; Lake Superior
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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