Population dynamics of the Cui-ui of Pyramid Lake, Nevada: A Potamodromous catostomid subject to failed reproduction

North American Journal of Fisheries Management
By: , and 

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Abstract

Fishes of the Truckee River basin (California and Nevada) evolved in an aquatic system that has been episodically diminished by extended drought. For potamodromous species, such as the endangered Cui-ui endemic to Pyramid Lake, Nevada, prehistoric episodic severe drought presumably led to periods of failed reproduction due to restricted access to spawning habitat. The response of the Cui-ui population to more recent failed reproduction caused by anthropogenic activity was studied to learn how to manage this species through periods of spawning disruption. Adult Cui-ui survival averaged 91% and 89% for females and males, respectively, in drought years when spawning migrations were either precluded or few fish migrated because of no or low stream flow. In each of 2 years when stream access was precluded, the adult survival was nearly 100% suggesting that Cui-ui survival is extended in the absence of a spawning migration. Survival averaged 62% and 60% for females and males, respectively, in years of spawning migrations. Strong predominant year-classes developed in the year immediately following a period of failed reproduction, indicating the species’ capacity for population rebound. Year-class predominance persisted for 6–10 years and through years of low survival associated with migration years, and this predominance is probably due, in part, to a diverse age at maturity. Contemporary water diversions from the Truckee River provided the opportunity to study the response of the Cui-ui population to years of failed reproduction. A projected drier Truckee River basin associated with global climate change will test the Cui-ui’s adaptive capacity to endure periods of reproductive failure. This study is aimed at assisting Cui-ui managers in conserving the species in this highly regulated and changing system. The study also adds insight into the prehistoric population dynamics of a potamodromous species in the arid western United States subject to wide fluctuations in annual precipitation and water availability.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Population dynamics of the Cui-ui of Pyramid Lake, Nevada: A Potamodromous catostomid subject to failed reproduction
Series title North American Journal of Fisheries Management
DOI 10.1080/02755947.2015.1057350
Volume 35
Issue 5
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher American Fisheries Society
Publisher location Lawrence, KS
Contributing office(s) Western Fisheries Research Center
Description 12 p.
First page 853
Last page 864
Country United States
State California, Nevada
Other Geospatial Truckee River basin, Pyramid Lake
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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