Serpent River First Nation, with the support of the A/OFRC, will be conducting a Juvenile Lake Sturgeon Index Survey in the Whalesback Channel of Lake Huron. This project is a part of a greater lake wide effort to assess the juvenile Lake Sturgeon population. Other organizations like the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans will be conducting the same project on other Lake Huron tributaries this year. The specific objectives of the Juvenile Lake Sturgeon Index Survey for Lake Huron are to:
- Describe the current lake-wide status of juvenile lake sturgeon in Lake Superior (ages ~4-15).
- Establish an index of relative abundance for juveniles to monitor recruitment, year class strength, and population trends over time.
- Describe and compare the biological characteristics of juveniles within and among locations throughout Lake Huron and over time.
This information will be valuable for making management decisions about this important Species at Risk.
Four monofilament gillnets will be set as follows; two gangs of gill nets will be combined to form a single continuous net. Each gang will contain three panels; 91.4 m of 11.4 cm stretch mesh, 30.5 m of 20.3 cm stretch mesh, and 30.5 m of 25.4 cm stretch mesh. Combined the two gangs will be 304.8 m long. Nets will be set for 24 hour periods. All Lake Sturgeon will be biologically sampled, (Fork Length, Total Length, Girth, Weight, Sex, Age, inspected for Lamprey scarring and PIT and FLOY tagged) and released. All non-target sports fish will be measured for total length, weight and sex. A subsample of all remaining non-target fish will be length tallied and weighed.
The project will commence July 22nd and run until July 27th, 2012.
For more information contact Fisheries Technician Sarah Couchie at 705-472-7888 extension 4.