Importance of food and predators to Lake Whitefish and Cisco recruitment in Lake Michigan

Grant: # 1838

Grant Amount: $207,585.00

Board Decision Year: 2019

Central Michigan University - Biology (Mt. Pleasant)

Biology

McNaught, Scott (mcnau1as@cmich.edu) (989) 774-1335

2019 Ecosystem Health and Sustainable Fish Populations: Ecological and Biological Research to Inform Management - Ecological and biological fisheries research to inform management

Project Summary

Since the early 2000s, Lake Whitefish (LWF) populations in Lake Michigan have declined whereas Cisco populations have increased. Changes in food resources coupled with differential vulnerability to predators may have negatively affected LWF recruitment and positively influenced Cisco. We will examine the spatio-temporal variability in nearshore zooplankton resources and the dietary preferences and growth of larval fish in situ. Laboratory experiments will highlight reactions of each species to food availability and vulnerability to nearshore predators.