A rehabilitation plan for walleye populations and habitats in Lake Superior

Miscellaneous Publication 2003-01


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The walleye (Stizostedion vitreum vitreum) has been historically important in regional fisheries and fish communities in large bays, estuaries, and rivers of Lake Superior. Significant negative impacts on the species caused by overharvesting, habitat degradation, and pollution during the late 1800s and early 1900s have led to the preparation of a strategic rehabilitation plan. The lakewide goal is to maintain, enhance, and rehabilitate habitat for walleye and to establish self-sustaining populations in areas where walleyes historically lived. Population objectives that support the goal are to increase the abundance of juvenile and adult walleyes in selected areas. Habitat objectives that support the goal include increasing spawning and nursery habitat in four areas: enhancing fish passage, reducing sedimentation, increasing water quality, and reducing contaminants in walleyes. Progress toward achieving the habitat objectives should be measured by documenting increases in spawning and nursery habitats, resolving fish-passage issues, reducing sediments in rivers, and reducing contaminant levels in walleyes. Stocking various life stages of walleye should be considered to rehabilitate certain degraded populations. Total annual mortality of walleye populations should be less than 45% to allow populations to either increase or be maintained at target levels of abundance. Routine assessments should focus on gathering the data necessary to evaluate abundance and mortality and on taking inventories of spawning and nursery habitats. Research should be conducted to understand the specific habitat requirements for Lake Superior walleye populations and the habitat-abundance relationships for populations and for the lake as a whole.

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype Organization Series
Title A rehabilitation plan for walleye populations and habitats in Lake Superior
Series title Miscellaneous Publication
Series number 2003-01
Year Published 2003
Language English
Publisher Great Lakes Fishery Commission
Contributing office(s) Great Lakes Science Center
Description 22 p.
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
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