Brown trout as an invader: A synthesis of problems and perspectives in western North America: Chapter 20

By:  and 
Edited by: Javier Lobón-Cerviá and Nuria Sanz



Brown trout are one of the most pervasive and successful invaders worldwide and are ubiquitous across the Intermountain West, USA (IMW). This species is the foundation of extremely popular and economically significant sport fisheries despite well-established negative effects on native fishes and ecosystems, resulting in very challenging, and often opposing, conservation and management goals. Herein, we review the direct (e.g., competition and predation) and indirect (e.g., disease vectors) pathways through which brown trout across the IMW have posed a threat to native species. We discuss the importance of brown trout as economically and culturally important fisheries, especially in novel tailwater ecosystems created by damming. To this end, we surveyed 24 experts from eight states across the IMW to document the relevance of novel brown trout fisheries in 51 tailwaters and found brown trout are thriving in these novel ecosystems, which are often unsuitable for native fishes. We discuss the challenging interplay between protecting native species and managing novel brown trout fisheries. Notably, the future of exotic brown trout in the IMW is shifting as the prestige of native fisheries is growing and many non-native eradication efforts have occurred. The future of exotic brown trout in the IMW, will depend on the nexus of public sentiment and policy, the effectiveness of eradication efforts, and the effect of climate change on both the native fishes and exotic brown trout. Regardless, because brown trout are pervasive and have a broad distribution through the IMW, populations of this species will likely persist at least in some locations into the future.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Brown trout as an invader: A synthesis of problems and perspectives in western North America: Chapter 20
DOI 10.1002/9781119268352.ch20
Year Published 2017
Language English
Publisher WIley
Publisher location Hoboken, NJ
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Seattle
Description 20 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Title Brown trout: Biology, ecology and management
First page 525
Last page 544