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Tuesday, January 29 • 6:00pm - 9:00pm
(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 10) Influence of Round Goby Invasion on Lake Erie Walleye Diets and Growth Rates

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AUTHORS: Cory Bauerlien, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: There is limited information regarding the effect that the invasion of Round Goby Neogobius melanostums into Lake Erie had on Walleye Sander vitreus diets and growth. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of Round Goby presence (pre-Round Goby = 1990-1996; post-Round Goby = 1997-2017) on Walleye diet composition and growth rate information. Analysis of variance was used to assess hypotheses regarding the effects of sex, age, habitat use, and temperature on diet selectivity (measured using Jacobs’s selectivity index) and growth parameters within the von Bertalanffy growth model.  While diet selectivity for Round Goby was not found, Walleye consumption of Round Goby was highest in August (p < 0.001), likely as a function of high surface waters (>22°C; p = 0.003) and location nearshore (i.e. ≤10m depth; p < 0.001). Walleye length-at-age, as well as growth coefficients, Linf and K, from fitted von Bertalanffy models, were higher for both male and female Walleye post-Round Goby, especially in younger individuals (ages 1-4).  The results presented demonstrate how aquatic invasive species may have the ability to affect native predator population characteristics. There may be other factors influencing the observed changes in Walleye growth, which should be addressed in future research.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm

Attendees (3)