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Welcome to the interactive web schedule for the 2019 Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference! The schedule is subject to change (as of December 11, 2018). Please check back for updates. To return to the main Conference website, go to: www.midwestfw.org.

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Sunday, January 27
 

7:00am

Conference Registration Desk Open
Sunday January 27, 2019 7:00am - 7:00pm
TBD

9:00am

(WORKSHOP) Best Management Practices for Establishing and Maintaining Pollinator Habitat
The workshop would include multiple facets communicating a range of established Ohio Specific BMP’s in regard to:
  • Site selection
  • Design of habitat
  • Species/ seed mix selection
  • Site prep
  • Instillation techniques and timing
  • Partnership Establishment
  • Short and long-term maintenance goals
We will provide attendees various scenarios that would best fit the multitude of objectives one can be faced when dealing with these specific kinds of projects/habitats. We will then discuss and provide examples of how to select sites that lend themselves to these various objectives and what species to utilize that best fit the project/habitat objectives. We find that a large limiting factor can be understanding and utilizing proper species lists and seed mixes that meet the needs of target species and potential umbrella species. In addition, we will utilize state specific case studies to engage attendees on how to implement proper techniques for addressing the most common success/failure scenarios they would experience in this process and how to address those issues to have the best success based on the habitat that they are trying to install. Lastly, we will discuss the importance of partnership formation. Partnering across agency lines builds a strong foundation of conservation meeting multiple conservation/preservation missions through; education, target species management planning, park/preservation habitat planning, infrastructure planning, etc.

Intended Audience: We invite professionals and enthusiasts to gain or enhance their current knowledge/skill set regarding proper site-based methodology that will enable groups or individuals to create, restore, enhance and/or manage upland projects/habitats.

Presenters: Michael Retterer, Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative, Pheasants Forever, Quail Forever; John Kiser, Ohio Division of Wildlife; Marci Lininiger, Ohio Department of Transportation, Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative; Donald Knight, US Fish and Wildlife.

Fee: $30

Sunday January 27, 2019 9:00am - 12:00pm
TBD

9:00am

(WORKSHOP) How to provide a great peer-review
Fisheries and wildlife science is advanced by the publication of high-quality peer reviewed manuscripts in books and journals, including American Fisheries Society's five journals and magazine and The Wildlife Society's three journals and magazine. Manuscripts are vetted, revised, and improved through an editorial process that may include routing through an editor, an associate editor, and multiple peer reviewers. Each step requires unique perspective and understanding of the reviewer/editor's role in the process. For example, a manuscript with a fatal flaw may be rejected by the editor at the first step, rather than continuing to the associated editor or peer reviewers. A manuscript with minor flaws may be subjected to peer review, yielding useful suggestions and allowing for publication of improved analyses. Fulfilling these roles to the best of one's ability can improve the efficiency of the peer review process, thereby reducing the time to publication, improving authors' publishing experience, and reducing unnecessary workflow for editors and reviewers alike. Unfortunately, training on how to provide reviews is limited. Lack of training results in misguided attempts to overreach or underperform when providing a review, low participation in peer review by professionals, and difficulty in retaining quality associate or lead editors. This course was developed to address the need for training in scientific manuscripts for both editors and peer reviewers and will have two parts (2 hr each); the first part is optional for those with more experience in the review process. Components of the course will be taught by senior authors and editors who have extensive experience in the manuscript publishing process, and tangible examples of good and bad reviews will be presented and discussed interactively. The course covers the importance of impact of review on authors, on journal quality and output, and on fisheries and wildlife science as a whole; how the publishing process works; how editors and peer reviewers are selected; how to get involved as a reviewer; roles and responsibilities of editors, associate editors, and peer reviewers; and how to provide reviews. Best practices will be emphasized applying to both wildlife and fisheries fields.

Intended Audience: Students and Professionals

Presenters: Rebecca Krogman, Iowa Department of Natural Resources; and Jesse Trushenski, Riverence and Evaqua Farms

Fee: $30

Sunday January 27, 2019 9:00am - 12:00pm
TBD

9:00am

(WORKSHOP) A Primer of Multilevel (mixed) modeling using R
The workshop aims at providing a hands-on experience for attendees to learn and use multilevel (or mixed effect) models using R, including, (1) a general overview of the linear multilevel modeling approach, (2) its applications, (3) its implementation in R (using R package lme4), (4) its implications in ecological applications, and (5) its expansion to modeling nonlinear and non-normal problems. The workshop will be largely based on Chapter 10 of Qian (2016), including examples from modeling stream ecosystem responses to watershed urbanization, statistical issues related to Toledo water crisis, detecting illegal poaching of endangered plant species in National Parks, modeling changes in Lake Erie nearshore fish community in response to shoreline changes, and setting nutrient criteria for lakes and streams. Attendees are encouraged to submit case studies ahead of the time to be included in the workshop. The workshop will discuss some important conceptual issues that are commonly encountered in applications, through the development of empirical Bayes methods and the Bayesian hierarchical models, as well as Stein's paradox in classical statistics. The discussion will help attendees to better recognize when multilevel modeling is appropriate.

Intended Audience: For graduate students and professionals with knowledge at the level of a graduate-level biostatistics course, including statistical inference using hypothesis testing and estimation, statistical modeling (linear and nonlinear regression), and a working knowledge of statistical programming language R.

Presenters: Dr. Song Qian, The University of Toledo

Fee: $60

Sunday January 27, 2019 9:00am - 5:00pm
TBD

9:00am

(WORKSHOP) Climate Change Adaptation for Wildlife Managers: a hands-on “workbook” process (discount available for North Central Section members of TWS)
Wildlife managers face the growing challenge of helping wildlife populations and ecosystems respond to climate change. This active, hands-on workshop will help participants consider climate change and develop custom-built adaptation actions into their own real-world projects (e.g., Wildlife Management Area plan; population recovery plan). Through this workshop, participants will be able to: describe regional and local effects of climate change on wildlife in the Midwest, understand climate adaptation concepts in the context of terrestrial wildlife management, and develop custom-built actions to enhance the ability of wildlife to adapt to changing conditions.

Intended Audience: This workshop is for professional wildlife managers, including staff members from consulting firms; NGO conservation organizations; and employees of federal, state, tribal, and county agencies. We ask participants to bring their own real-world projects to consider at this workshop. Example projects include: a habitat management plan for a state Wildlife Management Area, a population plan for a sensitive or harvested species, or a landscape-scale wildlife management plan among several agencies. We encourage small teams of 2-5 people to work together at the workshop, but individuals working on their own are also welcome.

Presenters: Olivia LeDee, Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center; Chris Hoving, Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources; and Stephen Handler, US Forest Service and Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science

Fee: $60 (discount available for North Central Section members of TWS; fee is $10) To receive discount, use code: TWS NCS Member Rate W2

Sunday January 27, 2019 9:00am - 5:00pm
TBD

9:00am

(WORKSHOP) Facilitation Basics for Managers
This course provides tools to design and implement productive meetings. Participants will learn basic facilitation skills and techniques for dealing with disruptive behaviors. Class time is provided to practice using tools and skills to plan and facilitate meetings that accomplish objectives while minimizing conflict. Participants at every level are welcome, since the new skills will be useful even when attending, but not running, a meeting. Participants will learn how to facilitate meetings effectively, use appropriate process tools and techniques to reach the meeting objectives, identify disruptive behaviors in group processes and practice strategies to deal with them.

Intended Audience: All levels will benefit from attending this workshop, from professionals to students. Content is easy to comprehend and is applicable to both those leading and attending meetings (beginner-intermediate content, depending on intended applicability).

Presenters: Jan Kucklick, NOAA Office for Coastal Management; Emily Kuzmick, ODNR Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Research Reserve

Fee: $60

Sunday January 27, 2019 9:00am - 5:00pm
TBD

12:00pm

Exhibitor Set-up
Sunday January 27, 2019 12:00pm - 6:00pm
TBD

12:00pm

Speaker Ready Room
Sunday January 27, 2019 12:00pm - 6:00pm
TBD

1:00pm

(WORKSHOP) Partners in Flight: Landbird Conservation Planning Tools for the Midwest
Since its inception in 1990, Partners in Flight (PIF) has taken progressive steps to provide useful range-wide landbird conservation vulnerability assessment at both continental and Bird Conservation Region (BCR) scales. This workshop will introduce conservation planners to the PIF species assessment, prioritization, and population estimates databases and demonstrate how these tools can be used to set conservation priorities. at national, regional, and state scales. Planners are often confused by the different types of species assessments available and the prioritization lists they generate. This workshop will elucidate where and why species lists differ and how they are complementary. More importantly, the workshop will present a series of scenarios intended to provide practical insight into how best to implement bird conservation plans in the face of rapidly changing environments in order to address threats that appear to be limiting for individual species and species groups. The major platform that participants will navigate in real time will be the revised Partners in Flight website and its connections to supporting databases and plans. The workshop will focus on the Midwest and link explicitly to activities of the Upper Mississippi and Great Lakes Joint Venture.

Intended Audience: Professional conservation planners and students developing research proposals. Content level will be beginner to intermediate.

Presenters: Tom Will, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Fee: $30

Sunday January 27, 2019 1:00pm - 5:00pm
TBD

1:00pm

(WORKSHOP) The Wildlife Society’s Certification Program: Workshop and Application Clinic (TWS NCS Leadership Series, free for North Central Section members of TWS)
The goal of this workshop would be twofold. The first goal would be to promote and explain the Wildlife Society’s (TWS) Professional Certification Program for professional wildlife biologists. The second goal would be to give potential applicants hands-on advice and support for navigating and filling out the certification application given their unique coursework and experience. Please note: this workshop is part of the TWS NCS Leadership Series.

Intended Audience: Students and young wildlife professionals

Presenters: Tim Van Deelen, UW-Madison, Former Chair of TWS’s Certification Review Board

Fee: $30 (free for North Central Section members of TWS) To receive discount, use code: TWS NCS Member Rate W7

Sunday January 27, 2019 1:00pm - 5:00pm
TBD

2:30pm

4:30pm

AFS NCD Executive Meeting
Sunday January 27, 2019 4:30pm - 5:30pm
TBD

6:00pm

Featured Event! Welcome to Ohio Social
Sunday January 27, 2019 6:00pm - 8:30pm
TBD
 
Monday, January 28
 

7:00am

Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors
Monday January 28, 2019 7:00am - 8:00am
TBD

7:00am

Conference Registration Desk Open
Monday January 28, 2019 7:00am - 6:00pm
TBD

7:00am

Speaker Ready Room
Monday January 28, 2019 7:00am - 6:00pm
TBD

8:00am

8:30am

9:30am

10:00am

Refreshment Break with Exhibitors
Monday January 28, 2019 10:00am - 10:20am
TBD

10:00am

Wild Jobs Café
Attention Students: Be sure to stop by the Wild Jobs Café on Monday and Tuesday to interact with potential employers, meet students and professionals in your area of interest, and get expert advice to help advance your career. Drop in at any time to visit the Resource Tables and Job Board to gain information about employment and graduate opportunities.

The following activities will be available:
  • Resume Writing Review: Want a professional opinion on what makes a strong resume? Sign up for a 15- minute time slot to have a professional review your resume. Participants will be asked to sign up ahead of time; instructions to follow.  
  • Interview Skills: Looking to apply for a position but worried about the interview? Sign up for a 15- minute mini mock interview that will consist of 1-2 questions followed by a critique, so please come prepared to talk. Participants will be asked to sign up ahead of time; instructions to follow.  
  • Job and Graduate Appointment Board in the Wild Job Café: Professionals or graduate advisors with open or anticipated positions can post those opportunities on the jobs and graduate appointment board. General information about job searching, desired skills, and application processes from prospective employers is also welcome. This will be a literal board and table for posting information.

Monday, January 28, 2019
  • 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM / Meet and Greet with potential employers
Tuesday, January 29, 2019
  • 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM / Interview Skills/Mock Interviews (sign up for a 15-minute timeslot)

Monday January 28, 2019 10:00am - 5:00pm
TBD

10:20am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Using a Long-term Tagging Study to Evaluate Escapement, Survival, and Angler Catch of Stocked Muskellunge in Ohio Reservoirs
AUTHORS: Curtis P. Wagner, Kevin S. Page – Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: Muskellunge fisheries in Ohio are maintained through stocking.  The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) stocks approximately 20,000 advanced-fingerling (10–12 inches) Muskellunge annually among nine reservoirs (1 fish/acre).  Currently, voluntary angler reports of Muskellunge catches provide managers with information on the locations, numbers, sizes, and harvest of Muskellunge.  However, this voluntary reporting approach potentially misses critical information on population dynamics metrics such as survival, escapement, and the probability of catching a fish.  To provide additional information on which to evaluate Muskellunge population dynamics in Ohio, the ODOW initiated a long-term tagging study.  Starting in 2013, all Muskellunge stocked into four study reservoirs (>43,000) have been implanted with passive integrated transponders (PIT).  Escapement of Muskellunge is monitored using in-stream PIT detection systems stationed within dam spillways.  Anglers report in-reservoir recaptures using handheld PIT tag readers.  To date, more than 850 implanted Muskellunge have been detected or reported. Focusing on the escapement component of the study, we found that escapement of Muskellunge appears to vary seasonally and depend on the type of dam water control structure.  For one reservoir, the probability of escapement was 4 – 36%, annually.  Together, these estimates provide a more comprehensive picture of Muskellunge fisheries in Ohio reservoirs.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:30am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-01) The North American AFS Freshwater Fish Sampling Standardization Program: Update and Evaluating Harvest Regulations
AUTHORS: Scott A. Bonar, U.S. Geological Survey Arizona Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Norman Mercado-Silva, Centro de Investigacion en Biodiversidad y Conservacion, Universidad Autonoma del Estado de Morelos; Kevin L. Pope, U.S. Geological Survey Nebraska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

ABSTRACT: Evaluation of harvest regulations clearly benefits from standard collection and presentation of data. Advantages include the ability to better evaluate regulations over space and time; the ability to share data more effectively with colleagues across political boundaries; the capacity to design large studies; and improved communication with anglers. The American Fisheries Society developed standard methods to sample freshwater fish populations to aid in data comparison and collection, publishing them in 2009 in the book Standard Methods for Sampling North American Freshwater Fishes. This project involved 284 scientists from 107 different organizations across Canada, Mexico and the United States. Because of interest generated from the first edition, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) and AFS are supporting development of a second edition of the book to move AFS closer towards having development of standard sampling methods as an ongoing activity of the society. Goals for the second edition include querying fish management agencies across North America as to areas of improvement, but otherwise retaining methods as similar as possible to preserve standardization; adding additional requested chapters and expanding participants; revising data averages and developing a process for updating methods in the future. Standardization in industry, medicine and science has led to great advances. American Fisheries Society standard freshwater fish sampling methods are a powerful tool for addressing a wide variety of changing objectives. One of these is evaluating harvest management regulations, where improved assessments are possible with larger samples sizes, the ability to design before-after-treatment-control experiments and collaborate across political boundaries when managing the continent's fish populations.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-02) Tracking Recovery Goals for the Conservation Reliant Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake
AUTHORS: Michael Redmer, Michael J. Dreslik, Eric T. Hileman – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: One of the most consistently cited threats to the Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake (EMR), even on protected lands, is the loss of preferred habitat (sunny, gramminoid-dominated plant communities) to succession from woody plants and invasive species.  The EMR is a conservation or management reliant species, and preferred management techniques (e.g., prescribed fire, mowing, and brush removal) converts and maintains preferred habitat. Life history studies indicate EMR populations can be sensitive to even small amounts of additive mortality, and crucial habitat management actions such prescribed fires present risks. Risks are especially apparent when actions are implemented during periods where populations are most concentrated and vulnerable, such as spring egress, thus creating a paradox amongst habitat and population needs.  Development of recovery implementation strategies will require monitoring to: (1) ensure habitat goals and responses are being achieved, and (2) populations of the EMR respond positively, both in an adaptive management framework. A monitoring protocol initially developed for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and then modified/implemented by the Illinois Natural History Survey (1999-present) and others, is now or will soon to be used to monitor at least six EMR populations in four states. The protocol gathers data on relative abundance, individuals within monitored EMR populations, and a suite of habitat variables. We propose  that mplementing the protocol at additional select EMR sites where habitat management is planned could be done relatively inexpensively and would allow a direct comparative approach to monitoring range-wide EMR recovery.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-03) A System for Rapid eDNA Detection of Aquatic Invasive Species
AUTHORS: Austen Thomas, Smith-Root; Samantha Stanton, Michigan State University; Jake Ponce, Smith-Root; Mieke Sinnesael, Biomeme; Phong Nguyen, Smith-Root; Caren Goldberg, Washington State University

ABSTRACT: Environmental DNA (eDNA) detection of aquatic invasive species using PCR is a powerful new tool for resource managers, but laboratory results often take weeks to be produced which limits options for rapid management response. To circumvent laboratory delay, we combined a purpose-built eDNA filtration system (ANDe) with a field DNA extraction and handheld qPCR platform (Biomeme) to form a complete field eDNA sampling and detection process. A lab study involving serial dilution of New Zealand mudsnail eDNA was conducted to compare the detection capabilities of the field system with traditional bench qPCR. Two field validation studies were also conducted to determine if the on-site eDNA process can be used to map mudsnail eDNA distribution and quantify temporal fluctuations. Both platforms (Biomeme, bench qPCR) lost the ability to reliably detect mudsnail eDNA at the same dilution level (10<sup>-4</sup>), with SQ values as low as 21 DNA copies/reaction. A strong relationship was observed between the average Cq values of the two platforms (slope = 1.101, intercept = - 1.816, R<sup>2 </sup>= 0.997, P < 0.001). Of the 80 field samples collected, 44 (55%) tested positive for mudsnail eDNA with Biomeme, and results identified both spatial and temporal fluctuations in mudsnail eDNA/L. However, the PCR inhibition rate (no IPC amplification) with Biomeme was 28% on average for field samples, and up to 48% in the temporal dataset. With additional optimization of the DNA extraction process, the ANDe-Biomeme system has potential to be a rapid and highly effective detection/quantification tool for aquatic invasive species.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:20am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 1) Can Otolith Microchemistry Be Used to Delineate Natal Origin of Larval Lake Whitefish in the Lower Waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan?
AUTHORS: Lydia R. Doerr, Dr. Patrick Forsythe, Dr. Christopher Houghton – University of Wisconsin-Green Bay; Scott Hansen, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Dr. Kevin Pangel, Central Michigan University

ABSTRACT: Much remains unknown regarding the early life history of Lake Whitefish in the Great Lakes despite their ecological and economic importance. The capture of larval Lake Whitefish in four major Green Bay tributaries (Fox, Menominee, Peshtigo, and Oconto Rivers) indicates the re-establishment of potamodromous stocks and suggests that these tributaries contribute to the overall metapopulation. The collection of larvae from the Sturgeon Bay shipping canal and the other reefs throughout Green Bay provides evidence that Lake Whitefish are also spawning in nearshore habitats. The ability to identify natal origin of a specific population is essential to creating effective stock-specific management plans; capable of protecting various sub-population that make up the larger Lake Whitefish metapopulation. Larvae collected during 2017-2018 were used to examine whether otolith microchemistry can accurately determine natal origin of these individuals. Preliminary analyses found significant differences in the ratio of strontium and barium to calcium in riverine and offshore water chemistry for Green Bay and Lake Michigan.  The incorporation of these and other trace elements in larval otoliths allowed for the identification of natal origins of Lake Whitefish sub-populations. Otolith microchemistry proved successful at delineating natal origins at both broader level (i.e. tributary vs. open water) and at the site-specific scale.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

10:20am

(WILDLIFE: URBAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICT) What Does Urbanization Actually Mean? A Review and Synthesis of Urban-ness in Ecological Research
AUTHORS: Remington J. Moll, Michigan State University; Jonathon D. Cepek, Cleveland Metroparks; Patrick D. Lorch, Cleveland Metroparks; Patricia M. Dennis, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and The Ohio State University; Eric Tans, Michigan State University; Terry Robison, Cleveland Metroparks; Joshua J. Millspaugh, University of Montana; Robert A. Montgomery, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Extensive research has demonstrated that urbanization strongly alters ecological processes, often perniciously. However, quantifying the magnitude of urban effects and determining their cross-system generalizability importantly depends upon the ways in which urbanization is measured and modeled. We coupled a formal literature survey with a novel conceptual framework to document and synthesize the myriad of metrics used to quantify urbanization. The framework enables a clear cataloguing of urban metrics by identifying i) the urban component measured, ii) the method of measurement, iii) the metric’s spatial scale, and iv) the metric’s temporal nature. Thus, the framework comprehensively captures the what, how, where, and when of urban metrics. We documented striking variability in urban metrics with respect to which urban components were measured as well as how, where, and when they were quantified. Overall, our survey revealed that urban metrics tended to be: i) be structurally-focused, ii) methodologically simplistic, iii) spatially variable, and iv) temporally static. The variation we observed in the development and application of urban metrics complicates theory development, cross-study comparison, and the implementation of management and conservation actions. Formally addressing this methodological variability within the context of our multi-dimensional conceptual framework helps pave a clear path for more efficient and policy-relevant urban research. Future work should address several crucial outstanding issues to overcome the challenge created by urban metric variability. We recommend: i) systematic assessments of various urban metrics across multiple scales, ii) an increased and judicious use of more complex urban metrics aimed at evaluating both mechanistic and broad-scale correlative ecological hypotheses, and iii) an increased emphasis on the socio-economic aspects of urban effects.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

10:20am

(FISHERIES: BEHAVIOR & PHYSIOLOGY) Metabolism and Movement: A Link to Partial Migration in Brook Trout
AUTHORS: Jacob E. Bowman, Jill B.K. Leonard – Northern Michigan University.

ABSTRACT: Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) express variability in movement strategies, including partial migration. Partial migration has gained attention because individuals that migrate can express polymorphism, growing larger than their stream counterparts. Partial migration and life history-related movement strategies may be related to individual variability in metabolic parameters; however, this has not been well documented in the field. We performed field metabolic rate determination on native brook trout in the Rock River in Alger County Michigan during spring and summer 2018, including both resting and active metrics. Brook trout were then tracked using PIT tags with stationary and backpack telemetry throughout the summer with a 46% recapture rate. Movement patterns were compared to metabolic rate rankings within fish. Each fish’s metabolic status was ranked relative to other individuals measured. The continuous field resting and field maximum measures were positively related (p<0.0001). The ranking sytem held this same correlation (p<0.0001). This relationship in metabolic parameters follows what is expected in individual variation of metabolism. Our work will allow us to understand at what level individual variation in metabolic phenotypes and associated movement phenotypes are related. This research will contribute to understanding the resiliency of valued life history strategies and morphotypes such as migration.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

10:20am

(WILDLIFE: WETLAND CONSERVATION) Multi-scale Habitat Associations with Marshbird Occupancy and Abundance in the Great Lakes Region
AUTHORS: Sarah Saunders, National Audubon Society; Kristin Hall, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources; Nina Hill, University of Minnesota; Nicole Michel, National Audubon Society

ABSTRACT: Intensifying wetland stressors in the Great Lakes region of the United States have hastened the need to identify local and landscape-scale habitat characteristics important to marsh-dependent wildlife to inform conservation prioritizations. The optimal spatial scale for assessing species-habitat relationships is not always apparent, but may affect inference about wetland use and suitability. We developed occupancy and abundance models, while accounting for imperfect detection, for nine marshbird species breeding in Minnesota. We evaluated species-specific wetland cover associations at three spatial scales (12.6 ha, 50.3 ha, and 4000 ha), quantified sensitivity to anthropogenic disturbance (developed land and agriculture), and evaluated ecoregional variation in marshbird occupancy and abundance. Emergent vegetation was positively correlated with occupancy rates of 89% of species, emphasizing the conservation value of this land cover type for sustaining breeding marshbird populations in the state. Agriculture was negatively associated with occupancy for three species, and positively associated for three other species, especially at the landscape scale. Development was negatively related to occupancy for five species, but positively related for Marsh Wren. Occupancy of all species was highest in the Prairie Pothole ecoregion, and Pied-billed Grebe and Sora were most abundant at wetlands in this region. Restoration efforts targeted within the western portion of the state are most likely to boost marshbird populations and use conservation resources effectively. Future applications of our modeling framework at broader spatial extents will contribute to the conservation of marshbirds in a region where rates of wetland loss and degradation are high.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

10:20am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: FISHERIES 1) What Makes Anglers Happy: A Sentiment Analysis of Walleye Angler Fora in the United States
AUTHORS: Kirsten Vacura, Paul Venturelli – Ball State University

ABSTRACT: Human behavior is an important factor in natural resource management. Obtaining the public’s opinion – for example, through creel, mail, and phone surveys – can be time consuming and expensive. Analyzing the text that hunters and anglers contribute to online fora may be a faster and cheaper alternative. In this study, we used walleye (Sander vitreus) oriented online fora to compare and explain the “happiness” of walleye anglers among and within ten U.S. states. We used sentiment analysis to score text data from each state as positive, negative, or neutral, and then normalized these scores by expressing them relative to the baseline level of happiness in each state. We determined the extent to which fisheries management explained variation in “happiness” scores within and among states via statistical analyses that included such factors as regulation strictness and complexity, angler density, stocking programs, and transparency of the state's natural resource agency. Although we did not generate results in time for the abstract deadline, we are confident that we will explain some variation and have interesting things to report at the meeting.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

10:30am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Movements and Habitat Use of Muskellunge in Green Bay, Lake Michigan
AUTHORS: Robert Sheffer, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Daniel Dembkowski, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Steven Hogler, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Joshua Raabe, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Daniel Isermann, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: Green Bay and its tributaries support a world-class fishery for trophy muskellunge that attracts anglers from across North America. The Lower Fox River and Green Bay muskellunge population is largely supported by stocking because natural recruitment is limited, possibly due to habitat limitations. While previous work has identified potential spawning locations, it is unknown whether muskellunge hatch at these locations and habitat attributes associated with successful hatching have not been determined. Our objectives are to: 1) determine the proportion of muskellunge spawning in tributaries to lower Green Bay or in Green Bay proper; 2) determine the proportion of adults that return to stocking locations to spawn; 3) determine if muskellunge return to the same spawning locations in consecutive year; 4) define habitat conditions that result in successful hatching and 5) characterize general movement patterns of muskellunge. We will identify spawning sites of tagged muskellunge (N = 60) using radio and acoustic telemetry and conduct spawning habitat surveys. Presence or absence of eggs and larvae at spawning sites will be used to develop predictive maps of suitable habitat throughout the Green Bay ecosystem.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:30am - 10:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

10:40am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Influence of Mink Predation on Brown Trout Survival and Size-Structure in Rapid Creek, South Dakota
AUTHORS: Austin G. Galinat, South Dakota State University; Steven R. Chipps, USGS South Dakota Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Unit ; Jonathan A. Jenks, South Dakota State University

ABSTRACT: In the early 2000’s, annual population surveys indicated that abundance of adult brown trout (Salmo trutta; >200 mm) in Rapid Creek, South Dakota had declined by approximately 70% and currently, the factors influencing survival are poorly understood. Recent studies show that growth and condition of brown trout in Rapid Creek are high compared to other Black Hills populations and diet analysis shows that food availability is an unlikely source of mortality. However, a recent study discovered that predation by mink (Mustela vison) accounted for 32% of brown trout mortality in Rapid Creek. Limited refuge habitat combined with high water clarity in Rapid Creek may enhance capture and foraging success by mink on adult trout. Moreover, the lack of stationary ice cover in tail water reaches, like that of our study area, has been linked to increased predation on trout by predators such as mink. Three experimental sites along Rapid Creek have been selected: (1) in-stream habitat improvement, (2) mink removal, and (3) control. Eight fish from each section were surgically implanted with radio transmitters and tracked for six months. Mortality has been observed at all study sites. 50% of predation in the habitat improvement site (n=4) and 25% of predation in the control site (n=2) is attributed to mink. 25% of predation in the mink removal site (n=2) is attributed to avian predators. Currently, another six month fish tracking period is underway. Survival estimates will be assessed between the three fish populations using mark-recapture survey techniques. Additionally, mink are being captured, implanted with radio transmitters, and tracked to determine movement and home ranges. Data gathered in this study will provide insight into the effectiveness of management techniques such as instream habitat improvements and predator block management on trout populations.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 10:50am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-01) Harvest Regulations: What Do We Know, What Do We Need to Know, What Should We Do Next to Develop and Implement Standardized Assessments to Evaluate Harvest Regulations?
AUTHORS: Quinton Phelps, West Virginia University; Martha Mather, Kansas State University; Daniel Shoup, Oklahoma State University

ABSTRACT: Fisheries managers are tasked with maintaining specific target sportfish populations to provide satisfactory opportunities for anglers. The outcome of this complex management process is variable and depends on characteristics of the ecosystem and population. Of the limited options that are available to alter populations and ultimately influence angler satisfaction, harvest regulations (size or creel limits) are arguably the most common tool. However, when and where harvest regulations work is poorly understood, and at times regulations do not have the effect that is expected. In this talk, we review what we know and do not know about regulation effectiveness and matches and mismatches between regulations and population characteristics. To develop a framework that can be used to decide when a regulation change would be beneficial, we identify criteria on which to base standardized assessments to evaluate harvest regulations. As examples of criteria to consider, prior to implementing a regulation change, standardized fish population assessment data should be used to model the effects of possible regulation changes. Additional, standardized sampling after implementing a regulation change should be used to determine if the desired effect on the population was achieved. In situations where the desired effect is not observed, a secondary series of diagnostics can be implemented to identify the influence of other biotic and abiotic drivers. Even if regulations provide the desired effects, follow-up data to guide our understanding of fish populations and further our understanding of the conditions governing regulation effectiveness is essential. Thus, standardized evaluations of these harvest regulations can yield the same benefits as standardized population assessments and can provide a pathway to learn more about the ecosystem.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-02) Eastern Massasauga Demography and Extinction Risk Under Prescribed-Fire Scenarios
AUTHORS: Eric Hileman, U.S. Geological Service; Richard King, Northern Illinois University; Lisa Faust, Lincoln Park Zoo

ABSTRACT: Population viability analysis is a useful tool for comparing alternative management scenarios but requires accurate estimates of demographic parameters. A major threat to the Eastern Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) is habitat loss due to encroachment of woody vegetation and invasive species. Current land management practices include prescribed fire and mechanical control to maintain habitat suitability. Although these methods improve habitat quality, they may increase the risk of depredation due to reduced ground cover and can cause mortality if conducted when snakes are active. We estimated demographic parameters from an 8-year study of an Eastern Massasauga population near the range center of the species in southern Michigan. From 2009 to 2016, we captured 826 Eastern Massasaugas 1,776 times. Annual survival increased with increasing age (age 0=0.38, age 1=0.65, age 2=0.67, age >3 females=0.71, age >3 males=0.66), abundance ranged from 84 to 140 adults, annual reproductive frequency was 0.44, and litter size averaged 7.6 offspring. Using these parameter estimates, we created a baseline population viability model that incorporated current prescribed-fire practices. This model projected a stable population with only a 0.2–0.6% probability of extinction over 100 years, suggesting that current management practices at this site are sustainable. Simulations of modest increases in mortality due to fire changed the probability of extinction little over 50 years (<0.7%) but increased probability of extinction up to 24.5% over 100 years in the most pessimistic prescribed-burn scenario. These prescribed-burn simulations may be comparable to burn regimes used at other Eastern Massasauga sites. As information on geographic variation in Eastern Massasauga demography accumulates, population viability can be modeled more widely.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-03) Testing the Role of Stream Flow on eDNA Abundance Using the Invasive Asian Clam Corbicula Spp
AUTHORS: Mark Davis, Illinois Natural History Survey; Amanda Curtis, University of Illinois; Jeremy Tiemann, Illinois Natural History Survey; Sarah Douglass, Illinois Natural History Survey; Eric Larson, University of Illinois

ABSTRACT: The efficacy of environmental DNA to assay the presence of invasive species hinges upon understanding the covariates influencing fate and transport. In lotic systems, these covariates may include biotic (e.g. invasive species density, seasonal activity patterns, etc.) and abiotic (e.g. stream discharge, temperature, ultraviolet irradiation, pH, etc.) factors, as well as their complex interactions. To better understand fate and transport of eDNA in complex lotic systems, we assessed eDNA copy number for invasive Asian clams (Corbicula spp.) in paired freshwater streams in central Illinois via a primer/probe assay. We collected eDNA samples approximately every two weeks for one year, as well as during periods of high and low discharge. At each sampling period, we collected data for a number of water quality variables (including pH, temperature, turbidity, conductivity, total dissolved solids, and salinity), and we also conducted mid-summer quadrat sampling at each site to estimate Corbicula densities. Importantly, we placed our two sampling sites at USGS stream gages in order to access continuous discharge data. We anticipated that high stream flow events could either dilute eDNA concentrations or increase eDNA concentrations by mobilizing Corbicula DNA from the sediments. We found abundance of Corbicula eDNA as copy number increased with increasing water temperatures, likely reflecting a late spring and early summer reproductive peak for this species. However, we found a weak and non-significant negative relationship between stream flow and Corbicula eDNA abundance, despite having sampled at base flow and high flow conditions across multiple seasons. As such, we conclude that stream discharge may have little effect on estimates of eDNA abundance for common stream and river species like the invasive Asian clam, although more studies should seek to evaluate the role of stream and river flow regimes on eDNA performance.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:40am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 1) Using Sonar to Describe Spawning Habits of Tributary Spawning Lake Whitefish in Green Bay, Lake Michigan
AUTHORS: Andrew Ransom, Dr. Patrick Forsythe, Dr. Chris Houghton – University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

ABSTRACT: A resurgence of the Lake Whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) population within the waters of Green Bay has been documented in recent years despite overall low and stable numbers reported for Lake Michigan. Furthermore, large numbers of adult Lake Whitefish have been observed within major tributaries during the time of spawning in late fall. While our understanding of the ecology and behavior of Lake Whitefish in Lake Michigan is improving, knowledge gaps exist with these new river spawning ecotypes. Among these knowledge gaps are microhabitat selection in spawning locations, as well as timing and drivers of migration. In order to bridge these gaps, we used using Adaptive Resolution Imaging Sonar (ARIS) to monitor relative fish abundances in 10 sample locations with different physical characteristics (ie. flow rates and substrate type) on the Fox (n=5) and Menominee (n=5) Rivers in Wisconsin. To confirm egg deposition in spawning locations, suction sampling was also conducted throughout each river. Sampling was conducted in November and December of 2017 and 2018, in order to encompass the entire spawn period. Results will be used to influence potential restoration efforts for similar ecotypes across the Great Lakes.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

10:40am

(WILDLIFE: URBAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICT) Aspects of Municipalities Associated with Occupancy and Abundance of Chimney Swifts in Illinois
AUTHORS: Maureen L. Hurd, Thomas J. Benson – Illinois Natural History Survey and Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Michael P. Ward, Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT: The Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica) is a bird species of conservation concern in Illinois and one of many aerial insectivores experiencing population declines across North America. While causes of declines are unknown, habitat availability and changes in insect populations are likely contributing factors. Chimney Swifts historically nested in tree cavities, but switched to nesting primarily in masonry chimneys as North American settlements expanded. With the growing trends of chimney caps and gas/electric heating, available chimneys are disappearing, and the loss of available nest sites may be driving Chimney Swift declines. Like other aerial insectivores, Chimney Swifts may also provide valuable pest control services and action may be needed to maintain this benefit. To investigate potential causes of declines in Illinois, we examined the influence of habitat and landscape factors on Chimney Swift abundance. We conducted surveys for swifts in 126 municipalities throughout Illinois and recorded the number of uncapped masonry chimneys at each survey point. We used these data along with landscape-level data such as composition of land cover surrounding points, areal extent of municipality, and age distribution of buildings. We found that 97% of municipalities were occupied by Chimney Swifts, but abundance varied considerably. Swifts were detected at 72.5% of survey points. Chimney Swift abundance was most heavily influenced by the number of uncapped masonry chimneys at survey points. Our results suggest that although Chimney Swifts are still widespread, contemporary building practices will continue to drive population declines and management should focus on approaches for providing and preserving suitable nesting sites.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

10:40am

(FISHERIES: BEHAVIOR & PHYSIOLOGY) The Expression of Bluegill Behavioral Types in Chronically Heated Environments
AUTHORS: Tyler Grabowski, University of Illinois; David Wahl, Illinois Natural History Survey; Joe Parkos, Illinois Natural History Survey; Dalon White, University of Illinois; Anthony Porreca, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Global climate change is expected to exert selective pressures on behavioral phenotypes within freshwater ecosystems through environmental changes associated with chronic warming of water temperatures. We compared the behavioral profiles of bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) from three power-plant cooling reservoirs to the behavioral tendencies of bluegill from three ambient reservoirs to investigate whether long-term exposure to increased water temperatures influences the expression of behavioral phenotypes. Power-plant cooling reservoirs were considered as model systems for global warming due to their year-round elevated water temperatures (~5°C) when compared to ambient reservoirs. We quantified activity, boldness, and exploration through 30-minute assays in a common laboratory setting that tested the spatial usage and response of individual fish to a suite of situations involving novel items and a predator, largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). For each assay, multiple measurements were recorded for each behavior, leading to the development of a principal component score (PCA) for activity, boldness, and exploration for each individual. PCA scores for each behavior were compared between groups (heated or ambient) and then used to determine how well behaviors correlated to one another within groups. Distinct behaviors did not differ between bluegill from heated and ambient lakes. However, we found significant directional changes between groups for the correlations of activity and exploration as well as for boldness and exploration. These results suggests that chronic exposure to warming can influence the expression of behaviors, providing insight for how the behavioral composition of bluegill populations may be modified in chronically warmed systems.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

10:40am

(WILDLIFE: WETLAND CONSERVATION) Marsh Bird Use of Wetlands Managed for Waterfowl in Illinois
AUTHORS: Therin Bradshaw, Western Illinois University/Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Cheyenne Beach, Western Illinois University; Heath Hagy, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University; Abigail Blake-Bradshaw, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Joseph Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station

ABSTRACT: Marsh birds are an understudied guild of migratory birds of conservation concern that can be valuable indicators of wetland health and may benefit from wetland management for waterfowl. I assessed marsh bird occupancy of wetlands across Illinois to better understand how natural wetland characteristics, impoundment management for waterfowl, and surrounding landscape characteristics influence marsh bird occupancy of wetlands. During late spring and early summer 2015–2017, I surveyed marsh birds three times annually at focal sites (passive or active management for waterfowl), random sites (emergent, pond, or lake polygons from the National Wetland Inventory), and Critical Trends Assessment Program (CTAP) sites (wetlands from the Illinois Natural History Survey’s CTAP). Marsh bird occupancy was greatest during my first survey period (Ψ=0.71, SE=0.11), followed by my second (Ψ=0.55, SE=0.14) and third survey periods (Ψ=0.39, SE=0.14). Focal (Ψ=0.74, SE= 0.09) sites had greater occupancy than random (Ψ=0.62, SE=0.08) or CTAP sites (Ψ=0.32, SE=0.11). Occupancy also varied by wetland complexity (greatest in the large levels of complexity [Ψ= 0.99, SE= 0.02]), waterfowl management intensity (greatest at an intermediate level of management [Ψ=0.39, SE=0.178]), percent wetland area inundated (greatest in large area of inundation [Ψ=0.74, SE=0.089]), and percent cover of persistent emergent vegetation (greatest with large percent persistent emergent vegetation cover [Ψ=0.81, SE=0.148]). Across species and marsh bird groups, detection probability decreased with ordinal date, for every week delay in marsh bird survey detection declined 7.1% (SE=2.1). Our results suggest that waterfowl habitat management positively influence marsh bird occupancy. Occupancy increased with management practices that were less intensive and focused on keeping water on the landscape with little disturbance to encourage habitat characteristics such as high habitat complexity, large area inundation and high percent cover of dense persistent emergent vegetation.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

10:40am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: FISHERIES 1) You Can Have Your Fire Hose and Drink from It, Too: An Expert-Approved Approach to Using Angler Apps to Generate Large Volumes of Usable Data
AUTHORS: Paul Venturelli, Ball State University; Kieran Hyder, Cefas; Tonie Aarts, Royal Dutch Angling Association; Rob Ahrens, University of Florida; Michael Allen, University of Florida; Paul Askey, Freshwater Fisheries Society of British Columbia; Johan Attby, Fishbrain; Leah Baumwell, International Game Fish Association; Peter Belin, Swedish Anglers Association; Scott Bonar, U.S. Geological Survey Arizona Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Shannon Bower, Uppsala University; Adam Brown, Substance; Steve Cooke, Carleton University; John Curtis, Ireland Economic and Social Research Institute; Andy Danylchuk, University of Massachusetts; Brett Fitzgerald, The Snook and Gamefish Foundation; David Fulton, U.S. Geological Survey Minnesota Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Jon Giacalone, Fishidy; Rob Houtman, Pacific Biological Station; Len Hunt, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry; Matt Johnson, C-Map; Jan Kamman, Royal Dutch Angling Association; Steve Kelling, Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Elizabeth Overstreet, NOAA Southeast Fisheries Science Center; Kevin Pope, U.S. Geological Survey Nebraska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Tim Sartwell, NOAA Fisheries Service; Sean Simmons, Angler's Atlas; David Stormer, Florida International University; Christian Skov, Technical University of Denmark

ABSTRACT: Angler smartphone applications (apps) are a new tool for efficiently collecting conventional and novel fisheries data, and have the potential to fundamentally change how anglers interact with the resource. Given that the angler app market is diverse, competitive, and unpredictable, an important step in realizing the potential of angler apps is to develop standards that will ensure a large and reliable data stream for scientific study. To that end, we convened a workshop that was attended by representatives from 11 angler apps, and 22 experts in recreational fisheries, human dimensions, economics, data management, citizen science, and standards. A pre-workshop survey of participants identified gaps between fisheries data needs and the data that angler apps were collecting. We addressed these gaps during the workshop by cataloguing the importance and specific needs associated with 49 data fields (i.e., standards), and then determining whether apps can deliver on these standards. We concluded that any standard can be met, but that anglers will only be willing to supply data for a subset of these standards. Therefore, we propose an initial set of standards that are important to fisheries and/or easy to obtain (e.g., via automation). The consensus among workshop participants was that these standards should be maintained by a science-based and international standards council. This council should also maintain a repository of participating angler apps (including which standards they meet, the amount of data that they have, and for which locations), and any data that participating apps are willing to share. Access to these data will be controlled by the standards council, and in accordance with terms that have been set out by each participating app.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

10:50am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Effects of Dam Removal on the Community Structure of Micropterus Species in Two Midwestern Rivers
AUTHORS: Reuben D. Frey, Eastern Illinois University; Cassi Moody-Carpenter, Eastern Illinois University; Shannon Cassandra Frary Smith, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff; Robert E. Colombo, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Flow regimes have been altered by the construction of dams on many lotic systems in the United States. Physical habitat changes within these systems in response to changed hydrology have been observed to affect the community structures of fish species therein. Removal of dams may revert the physical habitat characteristics of an impounded reach towards that of a free-flowing river system and subsequently invite a fish community shift. I investigated the effects of two separate low-head dam removals on the Vermilion River and North Fork Vermilion River in eastern Illinois on the community structure of Smallmouth Bass (Micropterus dolomieu), Spotted Bass (Micropterus punctulatus), and Largemouth Bass (Mictropterus salmoides). Data were collected from 2012 to 2015 using multiple gear types at six study sites on each river; two sites in the below-dam reach, two sites within the impounded reach, and two sites upstream of the impounded reach. Proportional abundance (pa) of each study species was observed to differ between each reach. Smallmouth Bass in both rivers were observed to have lower proportional abundance within the impounded reaches (pa = 0.005382) and higher proportional abundance in the below-dam (pa = 0.006611) and upstream (pa = 0.007102) reaches. In contrast, Largemouth Bass showed higher proportional abundance in the impounded reaches (pa =0.018838) and lower proportional abundance in the below-dam (pa = 0.010105) and upstream (pa = 0.005356) reaches, with Spotted Bass showing a similar pattern in the Vermilion, but not in the North Fork Vermilion. Variation in proportional abundance of fish may be driven by physical habitat requirements of each species. Future research will investigate the effect of changed flow regime on available physical habitat and Micropterus species community structure following dam removal.

Monday January 28, 2019 10:50am - 11:00am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:00am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) The Ancient Sport Fishes Project: Old Fish Emerging as a New Multimodal Recreational Fishery
AUTHORS: Jeffrey A. Stein, University of Illinois; Solomon R. David, Nicholls State University; Sarah M. King, University of Illinois

ABSTRACT: Gars (Lepisosteidae) and Bowfin (Amiidae), collectively known as holosteans, are among the most ancient fish lineages native to North American waters. Understudied and historically disliked relative to other North American fisheries, many holostean populations have declined due to habitat loss, overfishing, and eradication efforts. Furthermore, knowledge regarding the basic biology and life history of these species is limited. As anglers’ perception of these ancient species begins to transform from “rough fish” to “sport fish,” the need for a better understanding of the ecology and conservation status of holostean populations is fundamental to their effective management. This lightning talk will provide an overview of the Ancient Sport Fishes Project, a collaboration among researcher at the University of Illinois and Nicholls State University that explores the spatial ecology, population dynamics, genetics, and human dimensions of Gars and Bowfin.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:10am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-01) Using “Standard” vs. “Standardized” Sampling Methods to Evaluate Sport Fish Regulations
AUTHORS: Jeremy J. Pritt, Joseph D. Conroy – Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: In 2009, the American Fisheries Society (AFS) published a recommended set of Standard Methods, which sought to provide comparable fisheries data across North America. Since then, many agencies and researchers have adopted these standard methods. However, to evaluate regulations agencies often use long-term data produced by “standardized” methods—consistently used, long-term approaches that may have been shared among multiple agencies but that also differ from the North American Standard Methods (NASM). Significant barriers may exist for fisheries managers and researchers who consider transitioning from “standardized” methods to the NASM. Here, we illustrate important differences between “standard” and “standardized” methods in the context of evaluating sport fish regulations. To make informed decisions regarding regulation effectiveness, fisheries managers require population-specific data such as abundance, age and size structures, growth, and mortality measured before the regulation was implemented and for some period after. In some cases, the NASM may fail to provide these crucial data. To illustrate, we contrast two case studies: (1) using the NASM to evaluate reservoir crappie harvest regulations; as compared to, (2) retaining a multi-agency, non-NASM, but “standardized” method to assess the efficacy of Ohio River Sauger regulations. We conclude by recommending the following for future standard method development work: (1) explicitly consider and detail the sport fish population data needs of fisheries managers; (2) develop a mechanism to formally capture emerging assessment techniques as standard methods; and, (3) create a structure, through AFS, tasked with identifying, evaluating, and communicating accepted standard methods and their use.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-02) The Epidemiology of Snake Fungal Disease in Eastern Massasaugas over the Last 10 Years
AUTHORS: Matthew C. Allender, Ellen Haynes, Marta Kelly – Wildlife Epidemiology Laboratory, University of Illinois; Sarah J. Baker, Wildlife Epidemiology Laboratory and Illinois Natural History Survey, University of Illinois

ABSTRACT: Snake fungal disease (SFD), caused by the fungus Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola, emerged as a wildlife disease threat over the last 10 years and specifically may threaten the conservation of free-ranging Eastern Massasaugas. Historical records and museum collections have now indicated that SFD was present in some populations in Illinois at least a decade before its description in the literature. The disease syndrome involves clinical signs ranging from minor raised and thickened scales to severe crusts or ulcers on the head and body and can cause death in severe cases. The disease has been found to affect at least 31 snake species. As part of ongoing surveillance for SFD, the Wildlife Epidemiology Lab routinely tests samples for the presence of O. ophiodiicola using qPCR. Since 2013, we have tested over 2000 snake samples from 69 species. In total, 616 positive samples have been recorded across 31 species in 11 states. Despite the apparent sensitivity of pit vipers, only 12.5% (n=99/693) of Eastern massasaugas (Sistrurus catenatus) were positive, whereas nearly 60% (n=218/365) of water snakes (Nerodia sp.) were positive for O. ophiodiicola. Host factors, such as hematology and protein electrophoresis have demonstrated individual Eastern Massasaugas respond immunologically, but the basis for disease protection is unknown. This presentation will synthesize historical and existing knowledge of SFD in Eastern Massasaugas and plans for future efforts. Characterizing the epidemiology of this disease can improve future surveillance and management efforts that may mitigate its effects on snake populations worldwide.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-03) Choosing the Right eDNA Assay: Developing Standards for Limit of Detection and Limit of Quantification
AUTHORS: Christopher M. Merkes, US Geological Survey; Katy E. Klymus, US Geological Survey; Richard F. Lance, US Army Corps of Engineers; Emy Monroe, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Catherine A. Richter, US Geological Survey; Caren S. Goldberg, Washington State University; Antoinette J. Piaggio, USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service; Chris C. Wilson, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources; Joel P. Stokdyk, Margaret E. Hunter, Nathan L. Thompson, Craig A. Jackson, Jon J. Amberg – US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Many advances have been made over the last ten years in the field of environmental DNA, and new assays exist for a wide range of target species of interest.  As this technology matures, it is necessary to make methods more standardized to allow better comparisons across studies and enable meta-analysis of species distributions.  One key aspect where this may be possible is with assay sensitivity.  Sensitivity is a critical measure especially when comparing data from multiple markers, and it can be easily described in two measurements: Limit of Detection (LoD; the lowest concentration that can reliably be detected) and Limit of Quantification (LoQ; the lowest concentration that can reliably be quantified).  To facilitate this, an R script has been developed to allow a person with minimal R-coding ability to easily and reliably analyze their data to determine LoD and LoQ of their assays as well as automatically generate plots of their data that puts the values into context for easy understanding.  Putting eDNA assay results into a standardized framework and enabling end users to understand the results more clearly will enhance the value of eDNA data and facilitate its wider application.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:00am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 1) Quantifying Oxythermal Habitat Availability for Coldwater Species in the Central Basin of Lake Erie
AUTHORS: Joseph D. Schmitt, Christopher S. Vandergoot, Richard T. Kraus – USGS Great Lakes Science Center, Lake Erie Biological Station

ABSTRACT: Populations of coldwater fishes such as burbot Lota lota, lake whitefish Coregonus clupeaformis, and lake trout Salvelinus namaycush have declined in Lake Erie, while cisco Coregonus artedi have been extirpated. Warming temperature regimes and the re-eutrophication of Lake Erie have increased the frequency of harmful algal blooms and hypoxic events, which can reduce oxythermal habitat availability. Using vertical profile data collected in the central basin from 2008-2017, we developed generalized additive models to explore spatial, seasonal, and interannual trends in oxythermal habitat availability for lake trout, cisco, lake whitefish, and burbot based on published oxythermal niche benchmarks. Habitat availability was usually temperature-limited rather than oxygen-limited, and significant (P<0.05) monthly and interannual variations in habitat availability were detected for most species. In general, oxythermal habitat was most limited during August and September; moreover, significant interannual trends in habitat availability were also detected, with 2016 having the most extreme habitat reduction for many species due to record high temperatures. Understanding the spatiotemporal dynamics of oxythermal habitat availability will be important for the conservation and restoration of these fishes in our changing climate. Moreover, these models can be integrated with climate predictions to better understand how warming temperatures will affect coldwater habitat in the future.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

11:00am

(WILDLIFE: URBAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICT) The FAA Wildlife Strike Database: An Untapped Source of Avian Movement Data
AUTHORS: Bradley F. Blackwell, Morgan B. Pfeiffer, Travis L. DeVault, Thomas W. Seamans – USDA/APHIS/WS National Wildlife Research Center

ABSTRACT: Bird movements, particularly during migration, provide information on timing and species composition relative to climate change and population dynamics.  Movement data have been traditionally gleaned from observers for the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) and Audubon Christmas Bird Count, and via band returns.  More recently, weather and avian radars are contributing movement data (not necessarily specie-specific), and citizen science is providing observation data via Ebird.  An untapped and publically available source of species-specific movement data is the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s Wildlife Strike Database.  From 1990–2016, 183,296 wildlife-aircraft collisions (strikes) were reported (179,542 in USA and 3,754 strikes by US-registered aircraft in foreign countries) to the FAA. Birds compose approximately 96% of reported strikes, and aircraft “sample” intensively a broad spectrum of altitudes and geography seasonally.  Approximately 529 bird species have been struck over the 27-year period.  Our purpose is to introduce this novel source of avian survey data as a potential compliment to current information on avian movements.  As such, we will discuss how strike data are collected, identified, reported, and inherent biases.  We will provide trends for March through July over the last ten years in reported strikes for six species (including a warbler, blackbird, shorebird, waterfowl, wading bird, and raptor) struck in the Mississippi Flyway and species relative strike frequency per the respective year.  We will relate these trends to the known spring migration movement timing and Ebird population trends for each species for the same region and period.  

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:00am

(FISHERIES: BEHAVIOR & PHYSIOLOGY) Investigating the Influence of Turbidity on the Diet and Coloration of an African Cichlid Fish
AUTHORS: Tiffany Atkinson, Suzanne M. Gray – The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: One of the most deleterious stressors on aquatic systems is elevated turbidity (i.e. concentration of suspended particulates in a body of water) resulting from human activities. In turbid waters, fish struggle to perceive visual cues, especially those associated with foraging (e.g. finding prey items) and reproduction (e.g. colorful nuptial displays). Thus, we expect foraging behaviors to be altered with some prey being less detectable under turbid conditions. In addition, in many fishes, females prefer males with more saturated red and yellow (carotenoid-based) nuptial coloration, as indicators of high male fitness. However, fish are unable to synthesize carotenoid-based pigments, thus they rely solely on their diet for these red and yellow nuptial displays. We evaluated the influence of turbidity on the diet and male coloration of an African cichlid (Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae) across a gradient of degraded water quality. Wild-caught, male P. multicolor from low turbidity sites, within an agricultural zone, displayed significantly more carotenoid-based coloration than males from high turbidity sites, with standard length as a significant covariate. However, we found that prey availability (based on point-in-time macroinvertebrate sampling) was similar across turbidity levels. Diet analyses will allow us to determine if turbidity caused a behavioral shift in foraging and will reveal if carotenoid uptake varies across sites. Our results can inform future land-use decisions to maintain viable African fisheries and conservation of aquatic biodiversity.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:00am

(WILDLIFE: WETLAND CONSERVATION) Habitat Relationships of Virginia Rails and Soras in Impounded Marshes Within the Western Lake Erie Basin of Ohio
AUTHORS: Nicole Hengst, The Ohio State University; James Hansen, The Ohio State University; Brendan Shirkey, Winous Point Marsh Conservancy; John Simpson, Winous Point Marsh Conservancy; Robert Gates, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Secretive marsh bird populations are threatened by habitat loss throughout their ranges. In Ohio, Virginia rails (Rallus limicola) and soras (Porzana carolina) are species of concern and legally harvested. Very little work has been conducted to understand movements and habitat selection by Virginia rails and soras in coastal wetlands of the western Lake Erie basin. Managed wetlands are an important source of rail habitat in Ohio, yet little is known about how manipulation of water levels to produce food and cover for waterfowl affects migrating and breeding rails. Virginia rails and soras were captured and fitted with VHF radio-transmitters and tracked daily during March-September, 2016-2018. Twenty-seven percent of radio-marked rails migrated or dispersed from the study site within 1-2 days of capture in May-August. Mean home range sizes were 6.51 and 3.67 ha (SE = 1.40, n = 57 and SE = 0.95, n = 7) for Virginia rails and soras, respectively. Of the 166 radio-marked rails that remained at the study site at least one day after capture, 138 used only one impoundment unit at the study site. This allowed us to examine movement patterns of Virginia rails and soras in response to water level changes during 2016-2018. Vegetation surveys were conducted in 2018 to compare differences in habitat characteristics between locations of radio-marked rails and random points and to identify wetland habitat characteristics that rails select for as water levels change. Vegetation surveys were conducted weekly at individual radio-locations and at the end of the growing season within home ranges of radio-marked rails. Twenty-two percent of the weekly surveys indicated rails using areas dominated by cattail (Typha spp.) with water cover <40% and medium interspersion. This work will provide additional understanding of rail ecology and aid in better informed wetland management for rail species in northern Ohio.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:00am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: FISHERIES 1) Assessing Opinions Toward Native Fish Management in the Black Hills Region of South Dakota
AUTHORS: Seth J. Fopma, South Dakota State University; Larry M. Gigliotti, US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Fisheries management has traditionally focused on the preservation and proliferation of fishes valued by the managing society. Typical management has almost exclusively focused on ‘sport’ and native fishes. Recent trends in societal values have extended the management of fisheries to include non-game species. Mountain Sucker, Catostomus platyrhynchus, is a native, non-game species of conservation concern in South Dakota. Recent surveys suggest that Mountain Sucker have declined in both distribution and density across the Black Hills. To properly assess the best-management practices for Mountain Sucker in the region, we must assess the societal attitudes towards the active management of native species. A stratified-random sample of Black Hills area residents (4,200) were surveyed using a modified Tailored design method (24% return) to assess attitudes towards native, non-game fisheries management in the Black Hills. K-means cluster analysis was used to categorize respondents into three distinct groups (apathetic, utilitarian angler, and conservation angler) defined by attitudes towards native fisheries management. Further analysis revealed significant differences in angling activity between groups. Results will guide managers towards appropriate native fish management practices.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:10am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Dietary Comparisons of Fishes in the US and Mongolian Mountain Steppe
AUTHORS: Mario Minder, Mark Pyron, Robert Shields – Ball State University; Emily Arsenault, Greg Matthews – University of Kansas; Bolortsetseg Erdenee, Drexel University

ABSTRACT: Compared the the United States, rivers in Monglolia are very minimally impacted by human development. As part of a larger macrosystems project we focused on the diets of fishes located in both the U.S. and Mongolian Mountain Steppe ecoregions. We analyzed gut contents from fishes collected across multiple sites on each continent to compare diets among species and funtional groups. Using the Manly-Chesson diet selectivity index we compared the contents of our stomachs to results of invertebrate surveys performed concurrently with our fish sampling.The results of this will be used in conjuction with future sampling efforts that will complete in the Summer of 2019 in the Mongolian Grassland.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:10am - 11:20am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:20am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Demographics of a Healthy Population of Blue Suckers, Cycleptus elongatus, in an Unimpounded Midwest River
AUTHORS: Dakota Radford, Cassi Moody-Carpenter, Robert Colombo – Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Blue Suckers, Cycleptus elongatus, in the Wabash River bounding southern Illinois from southern Indiana are one of few persisting healthy and readily surveyable assemblages of this species. Understanding the demographics of this population is an important measure to inform the conservation of a species critically imperiled in much of its range. We used nine years of Blue Sucker samples (n=431) collected via randomized DC electrofishing sampling for a long-term Wabash River fish monitoring program to draw conclusions about population density, size structure, and habitat selection. We computed condition and significant species co-occurrence, and compared CPUE across sampling periods. We identified dominant size classes at 601-650mm total length (25.1%) and 651-700mm total length (27.6%) based on samples ranging from 66-775mm (mean 617.0mm). In-progress research includes a comparison of conflicting methods and results for Blue Sucker aging, a morphological comparison and histological study of Blue Sucker gonads, and genetic analysis using microsatellite loci to compare heterogeneity against geographic distance. It is the goal of this research to inform Blue Sucker assessment methods and management of this declining species by enhancing our understanding of functional Blue Sucker populations, and to provide a snapshot of a healthy assemblage of this species.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:30am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-01) Standardized and Robust Analyses for Evaluating Fishing Regulation Effectiveness
AUTHORS: Dray D. Carl, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Daniel E. Shoup, Oklahoma State University; Martha E. Mather, Kansas Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Quinton E. Phelps, West Virginia University

ABSTRACT: Regulation changes are frequently used to alter lakes and reservoir fisheries to achieve management goals.  Although regulations are generally thought to be effective, fisheries management is hampered by a lack of published studies evaluating regulation effectiveness.  This is particularly troublesome given examples where regulations did not have their expected result, as the lack of published literature on this topic means there is little guidance as to when regulations will be effective.  Further, the few studies that address the topic typically just compare samples from before and after regulations are applied.  In this traditional before-after approach, many temporal changes (e.g., drought, flood, mean annual temperature, etc.) could drive changes in the fish population over time that would erroneously be attributed to the regulation change.  Use of the BACI (before, after, control, impact) design is a more robust approach that avoids erroneous decisions that might result from traditional before-after analyses.  However, the BACI design is little used, probably because of the perception that it would require more effort than is available to sample additional control lakes.  However, we suggest that some prior planning and creativity can make BACI designs possible with little additional work, especially in situations where standardized sampling is routinely used to monitor other lakes that could serve as control systems.  It is even possible that multi-state projects could be performed using routine monitoring that is already planned to provide control lakes or additional replication in cases where both states use the same standard sampling protocol.  State agencies considering regulation changes have a unique opportunity to significantly improve our understanding of regulation effectiveness if they planned BACI studies to track effects of new regulations through time, benefiting the entire field with information that up to this point has been sorely lacking.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-02) Status and Assessment of Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus catenatus) in Berrien County, Michigan
AUTHORS: Roshelle Hall (Masters in Biology); Dr. Daniel Gonzalez-Socoloske (Associate Professor); Dr. Peter Lyons (Associate Professor) – Andrews University

ABSTRACT: The Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus; EMR) is a small robust pit viper currently found in nine states and the province of Ontario, Canada.  Wetland habitats have experienced significant destruction and fragmentation by humans; as a result, the current distribution of the EMR is a fraction of its historic distribution. For this reason, the EMR has been federally listed as threatened.  In general, little is known about the current distribution of this rattlesnake (in the southwest corner of Michigan), the size of local populations or their stability and genetic diversity. Much of this knowledge is based upon historical data.  Our purpose was to update the available information on the current status in Berrien County and one Van Buren County site. This was done through presence/absence surveys, evaluation of potential threats at each site visited and genetic analysis at the haplotype level.  Through our field surveys we confirmed presence of EMRs at 4 of the 6 historic locations surveyed.  Current threats at these sites include human encroachment, road traffic, and general health of the particular habitat.  Despite the relatively small sample size and isolated populations in these counties,  the haplotype diversity discovered appears to be high in comparison to the rest of their range. 

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-03) Refinement of eDNA as an Early Monitoring Tool at the Landscape-level: Study Design Considerations
AUTHORS: Emy Monroe, Erica Mize – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Richard Erickson, Christopher Merkes – US Geological Survey; Nicholas Berndt, Katherine Bockrath, Jeena Credico, Nikolas Grueneis, Jenna Merry, Kyle Mosel, Maren Tuttle-Lau, Kyle Von Ruden, Zebadiah Woiak, Kelly Baerwaldt, Sam Finney – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Jon Amberg, US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Natural resource managers use data from survey or monitoring efforts that use a wide variety of tools. Environmental DNA (eDNA) is a genetic surveillance tool for detecting species and holds potential as a tool for large-scale monitoring programs.  Two challenges of eDNA-based studies are imperfect capture of eDNA in collection samples (e.g., water field samples) and imperfect detection of eDNA using molecular methods (e.g., quantitative PCR), which create uncertainty about sample designs for eDNA-based monitoring.  We used an occurrence model to address these challenges and determine how many  samples were required to detect species using eDNA and to examine when and where to take samples.  Water samples were collected from three different habitat types in the Upper Mississippi River when both Bighead Carp and Silver Carp were known to be present based on telemetry detections.  Each habitat type was sampled during April, May and November.  Detections of eDNA for both species varied across sites and months, but were generally low, 0 - 19.3% of samples were positive for eDNA.  Additionally, we found statistical artifacts where sample eDNA capture probabilities would artificially inflate estimates of molecular detection probabilities.  Overall, we found that eDNA-based sampling holds promise to be a powerful monitoring tool for resource managers, however, limitations of eDNA-based sampling include different biological and ecological characteristics of target species as well as aspects of different physical environments that impact the implementation of these methods.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:20am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 1) Mark-Recapture Validation of Pectoral Fin Ray Age Estimation for Lake Sturgeon
AUTHORS: Brad Utrup, Jan-Michael Hessenauer, Andrew S. Briggs, Todd Wills, Michael Thomas (retired) – Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Age estimation is a fundamental part of fisheries management; critical for evaluations of growth, mortality and recruitment.  Validation of ages obtained from age estimation of hard structures is a necessary part of the ageing process in order to better understand the magnitude of error and bias associated with structure interpretation.  Validation studies on large-bodied and long-lived species such as Lake Sturgeon Acipenser fulvescens are challenging.  We utilized a 20-year mark-recapture dataset from Lake St. Clair and the St. Clair River, Michigan, USA to validate pectoral fin ray age estimates from 51 individuals that were sampled twice. The time at large ranged from 2 to 17 years between capture-recapture events.  All fin rays were aged by two separate readers (agreement rate 94.1%).  Samples were divided into four quartiles based on mean annual growth rates during their time at large.  Age error was defined as the difference between the age of the fish at first and second capture and the number of years at large.  No difference in time at large existed among the four groups, but age error differed among the four groups.  Furthermore, age error did not differ from zero for the two fastest growing quartiles but did differ significantly from zero for the two slowest growing quartiles.  We conclude that for Lake Sturgeon growing faster than 3 cm/year (generally less than 100 cm in TL) pectoral fin rays provide valid age estimates.  Managers should consider the growth rates of Lake Sturgeon in their populations for determining a size threshold for utilizing fin rays for age estimation.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

11:20am

(WILDLIFE: URBAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICT) Efficacy of Avian Radar Systems for Tracking Birds on the Airfield of a Large International Airport
AUTHORS: Brian Washburn, USDA Wildlife Services; Adam Phillips, USDA Wildlife Services; Siddhartha Majumdar, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; David Mayer, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Ryan M. Swearingin, USDA Wildlife Services; Edwin Herricks, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Travis L. Guerrant, USDA Wildlife Services; Scott Beckerman, USDA Wildlife Services; Craig Pullins, USDA Wildlife Services

ABSTRACT: Avian radar technologies have the potential to serve an important role in the quantification of bird movements and determining patterns of bird use in areas where human–wildlife conflicts might occur (e.g., airports, wind energy facilities). However, capabilities and limitations of these technologies are relatively unknown and ground-truthing studies are needed to help wildlife managers understand the biological meaning of radar information. We evaluated the efficacy of 3 X-band marine radar sensors for tracking birds and flocks of birds observed on the airfield at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, USA, during March 2011−November 2012. Specific information regarding field observations of birds or flocks was used to determine how frequently the 3 radar sensors provided corresponding tracks of these avian targets. In addition, various factors were examined to determine if they had any influence on the frequency of correspondence between visual observations and radar tracks. Of the 972 sightings of individual birds (49%) or flocks of birds (51%) by observers on the airfield that had the potential to be observed by the radar, 141 (15%) were tracked by at least one radar sensor. All confirmed tracks of bird/flocks were ≤4.8 km from these radars. Among the 3 radar sensors, larger-bodied bird species, bird/flocks flying at higher altitudes, and bird/flocks closer to the radars increased the ability of those units to track avian targets. This study provides new information regarding the performance of radar systems for tracking birds on the airfield of one of the largest and busiest airports in the world.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:20am

(FISHERIES: BEHAVIOR & PHYSIOLOGY) Effects of Wastewater Effluent on Fin Length and Body Condition of Fathead Minnows
AUTHORS: Seth M. Bogue; Cassi Moody-Carpenter; Anabela Maia; Robert E. Colombo – Biological Sciences Department, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: The Sangamon River flows approximately 396 kilometers through central Illinois and is impounded in the city of Decatur for municipal use. The Sanitary District of Decatur (SDD) processes residential, medical, and industrial waste before releasing effluent into the river downstream of the dam. Discharge from the dam is significantly reduced during periods of low precipitation. As a result, the downstream stretch of the river is dominated by wastewater effluent. A high density of fish exhibiting elongated fins reside in this stretch of the river. To assess the relationship between effluent and fin elongation, Fathead minnows were exposed to wastewater effluent in microcosms at SDD and at a second wastewater treatment plant located in Charleston, Illinois. In addition, two control groups were exposed to dechlorinated tap water. Standard length, individual fin lengths, and weight was recorded for a total of 32 fish from each treatment during an 8-week time span. SDD treatment fish had significantly longer fins and exhibited better condition and faster growth in comparison to all other treatments. Our results are indicative of a causal relationship between SDD wastewater effluent and the fin elongation observed in fish of the Sangamon River. We hypothesize that fin elongation is the result of chronic exposure to contaminants and heavy metals present in the effluent.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:20am

(WILDLIFE: WETLAND CONSERVATION) The Influence of Impoundment Management on Whooping and Sandhill Crane Colt Survival at Necedah NWR
AUTHORS: Ross P. McLean, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: Whooping Cranes (WHCR) are federally endangered and in 2001, a reintroduction effort was initiated at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge (NNWR) in Wisconsin to establish an Eastern Migratory Population (EMP). However, despite seventeen years of management, recruitment remains low. Greater Sandhill Cranes (SACR, Antigone canadensis tabida) are biologically similar to WHCRs and have similar breeding ecology. We studied colt survival for both crane species at NNWR to determine if low recruitment is unique to the Eastern Migratory Population (EMP) of WHCRs, or an issue for both North American crane species in the initial introductory breeding grounds of the EMP. Additionally, we lowered water levels in some wetland impoundments to better mimic the natural annual water cycle. This management action was part of an effort to increase wetland and forage access for wading birds during summer months. Our objectives were to determine (1) if summer drawdowns and reduced wetland water levels increase survival of WHCR and SACR colts compared to cranes reared in or near impoundments with full water levels, and (2) differences in overall colt survival rates between species. We hypothesized that (1) WHCR would use the drawdown areas more than available wetlands with higher water levels, and (2) that colt survival would be higher in lower water wetlands due to increased mobility and access to prey. We placed VHF transmitters on adults and colts of both species to collect colt survival status and family group locations every day during the 2017-2018 field seasons. Analyses are ongoing, but many of the fledged colts were raised in areas with lower water. We will discuss implications for crane management in the Midwest. <a href="applewebdata://63650BC7-DDE7-47CB-BF71-58A32F69113E#_msoanchor_1"></a>

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:20am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: FISHERIES 1) Framing Social Values: How Small Fisheries Can Improve Quality of Life in South Dakota
AUTHORS: Aaron Sundmark (Ph.D. Student), Larry Gigliotti (Professor) – South Dakota State University

ABSTRACT: Sportfishing management focuses on fish resources, as well as the people using these resources. Therefore, evaluating management performance requires assessing both environmental and human-centered outcomes of a fishery. Over 400 small lakes in South Dakota are managed by the state agency to provide convenient opportunities to anglers and other recreational user groups. In January of 2017, a total of 3,753 questionnaires were mailed to residents near 7 small lakes that were diverse spatially and in their proximities to larger urban centers across South Dakota. We received completed surveys from 1,318 respondents (40% response rate). We measured the value of the lake to residents’ quality of life (dependent variable), familiarity with the lake, activities done at the lake, evaluations of conditions and amenities at the lakes and demographic variables. Analyses determined the uses, attitudes and values towards small lakes that are best at predicting their importance to local citizens’ overall quality of life living in nearby communities. Our findings suggest that the inclusion of social values in efforts to evaluate an agency’s management performance could help managers understand and predict the various user groups and the amount of overall use a lake resource will receive over time.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:30am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Fish Assemblages in an Effluent Dominated Stream in Central Illinois
AUTHORS: Ryan W. Sparks, Cassi J. Moody-Carpenter, Scott Meiners, Robert E. Colombo – Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: The Sangamon River, a tributary to the Illinois River, stretches about 396 kilometers across Central Illinois. The river basin has a dam located in the city of Decatur, IL creating a lake to supply drinking water for the city. Roughly 5 miles downstream of Lake Decatur, the Sanitary District of Decatur releases treated wastewater into the Sangamon River. Furthermore, 2 combined sewer outflows are located above the effluent, they are not treated. Fish were sampled at sites above this point pollution, directly at the source, and several miles below using DC-pulse electrofishing for 3 years. Also, we collected water quality data from 1 site upstream and 5 sites downstream of the Sanitary District. Our results showed high numbers of forage fish, consisting of almost 35 percent of the family Clupeidae and 18 percent Cyprinidae. The next highest abundance was Catostomidae at 30 percent; which displayed a high proportion of abnormal fin morphology. All abnormal fish were found below the point pollution of the wastewater treatment plant. Using Pulse-DC electrofishing, we will continue sampling our sites as well as incorporating mark-recapture methods in different seasons to track movement of fish in relation to the effluent.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:30am - 11:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:40am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Location, Location, Location: Identifying Preferential Drifting and Swimming Paths for Grass Carp Eggs and Larvae Under Different Flow Conditions
AUTHORS: Andres Prada, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Amy George, Ben Stahlschmidt, Duane Chapman – USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center; Rafael O. Tinoco, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT: To monitor and control the spread of invasive fish species, such as grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella), we need to know where to find them. Natural streams have complex cross sections with varied bed roughness and in-stream obstructions that alter flow conditions and influence the transport of grass carp during its early life stages. To identify how changes in mean velocity, vorticity, and turbulence levels affect the drifting and swimming patterns of eggs and larval grass carp, we conducted a series of laboratory experiments in a recirculating flume. Live diploid grass carp eggs were stocked and monitored for 80 consecutive hours. We investigated three scenarios: 1) a gravel bump, 2) vertical rigid pier, and 3) rigid submerged vegetation. We used quantitative imaging to track eggs and larvae throughout the duration of each test, obtaining their preferred spatial distribution, as well as drifting and swimming trajectories under each flow scenario. We found clear correlations between the larval spatial distributions and flow conditions characterized through particle image velocimetry. Differences between identified trajectories for eggs and larvae at various developmental stages show a clear active response to spatially heterogeneous flow fields, where larvae actively avoided areas of high shear, preferring zones of lower turbulence and low vorticity levels. Data show that there is not only a threshold mean velocity which exceeds the swimming ability of the larvae, but also thresholds for turbulence statistics that define whether the eggs or larvae can be found at specific zones in natural streams. Since the three chosen scenarios generate turbulence and coherent flow structures at multiple scales at various orientations, our findings can be applied to inform detection and capture methods in natural streams.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 11:50am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-01) Wisconsin's Northern Highland Fishery Research Area: A Long-term Comprehensive Program for Evaluating Fisheries Regulations
AUTHORS: Stephanie L. Shaw, Greg G. Sass – Wisconsin Department Natural Resources, Office of Applied Science, Escanaba Lake Research Station

ABSTRACT: The Northern Highland Fishery Research Area (NHFRA) includes five lakes in north central Wisconsin that were designated for experimental fisheries research purposes in the 1940s by the Wisconsin Conservation Commission. The five lakes were selected to encompass the diversity of lake types and fish communities present in Wisconsin. The NHFRA has maintained the longest running compulsory creel census in the world (1946-present), has monitored fish community, aquatic ecosystem, and climatic variables through standardized surveys, and has conducted directed research to evaluate unrestricted fisheries (no closed season, bag limits, or length limits), harvest regulations, gear restrictions, and the influences of stocking over time. Key species evaluated in the context of fisheries regulations or stocking have included walleye Sander vitreus, smallmouth bass Micropterus dolomeiu, northern pike Esox lucius, muskellunge Esox masquinongy, and lake trout Salvelinus namaycush. The creel census and standardized fish surveys have afforded valuable information to WDNR biologists regarding angler and fish responses (single-species and fish community) to a given regulation change. We will summarize the history of the Northern Highland Fishery Research Area and discuss several case studies of walleye, muskellunge, and smallmouth bass responses to harvest regulations or the lack thereof that have been directly applied to fisheries management in Wisconsin. By combining long-term creel survey information with standardized fish population surveys, Wisconsin has been able to make sound, science-based decisions to manage its diversity of fishery opportunities and has also been able to rapidly respond to emerging fisheries issues.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-02) Monitoring Eastern Massasauga Populations Within the Carlyle Lake Region
AUTHORS: Michael J. Dreslik, Illinois Natural History Survey; John A. Crawford, National Great Rivers Research and Education Center; Sarah J. Baker, Illinois Natural History Survey; Christopher A. Phillips, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: For effective conservation and recovery, an adaptive management framework is often best when paired with monitoring population-level responses. In many species, monitoring abundances over time using traditional capture-mark-recapture (CMR) methods is logistically challenging. N-mixture models are an extension of the occupancy and detection probability framework and can estimate abundances across multiple populations. The models use raw abundance counts taken during surveys, model the distributions of capture frequencies, incorporate density-dependent effects and can provide population estimates when recaptures are too few. When validated with traditional CMR estimates, they can provide robust estimates for multiple populations across the landscape. We chose to determine the effectiveness of an N-mixture modeling approach to generate population size estimates for the Eastern Massasaugas within the Carlyle Lake region in Illinois. Our results will be used to determine regional population trends and provide a foundation to assess the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-03) Validation and Comparative Performance Testing of Markers Useful for the Detection of Northern Snakehead (Channa argus)
AUTHORS: Christopher B. Rees, Theodore W. Lewis, Sandra Keppner, Joshua Newhard, Aaron P. Maloy, Meredith L. Bartron – U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Populations of Northern snakehead (Channa argus) have been introduced in the Lower Hudson, Bronx, and Rondout watersheds of New York, Lower Delaware watershed of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and the Lower Susquehanna watershed of Pennsylvania and Maryland. Because these observations are in close proximity to Great Lakes tributaries, Northern snakehead constitute a species of high invasion concern for natural resource agencies of Great Lakes connected waters. Traditional gear capture of Northern snakehead at low densities in their established range can be difficult due to the shallow, vegetation-rich habitat they typically occupy. As a result, significant environmental DNA (eDNA) detection efforts by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and partner agencies in portions of the Oswego River drainage and canal system of New York have been explored. In any eDNA detection effort, it is important to have confidence in the accuracy of the markers used, and particularly when the effort involves the detection of aquatic invasive species where management and/or response actions may be taken. Here we highlight results from validation and comparative performance testing of several eDNA markers designed to detect Northern snakehead DNA and detection results of the 2018 environmental sampling efforts.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:40am

(WILDLIFE: URBAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICT) Effects of Harassment on Behavior and Movement of Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) in an Urban Park
AUTHORS: Ryan Askren, Mike Ward – Illinois Natural History Survey; Scott Beckerman, Craig Pullins – USDA Wildlife Services

ABSTRACT: Increasing abundances of Canada geese (Branta canadensis) wintering in urban areas have led to a host of human-wildlife conflicts including feces deposition, human health risks, and aircraft collisions. Harassment is the primary tool wildlife managers use to deal with nuisance goose abundances yet has been deemed ineffective at changing goose abundances in an area or reducing issues in longer time periods. However, the effects of harassment at the individual level are poorly studied, especially in winter when harassment may have more dire consequences. The objectives of this study were to examine the effects of targeted harassment on 1) average daily movement distances, 2) habitat use, and 3) overall dynamic body acceleration (ODBA) as an index of energetic expenditure. To examine effects of harassment on individual Canada geese we used data from 41 geese marked with GPS transmitters in the Chicago Metropolitan Area. Harassment efforts were conducted December 2017- February 2018 by US Department of Agriculture – Wildlife Services personnel at an urban park near Midway International Airport as part of ongoing efforts to reduce risk to air traffic. We compared average daily movement distance and ODBA of geese that in and out of harassment areas. In addition, we quantified differences in proportional habitat use of geese between treatments. Canada geese subjected to harassment moved more than unharassed geese in December (x¯<sub>harassed </sub>= 338.2 ± 19.3 SE, x¯<sub>unharassed </sub>= 211.3 ± 8.4 SE), January (x¯<sub>harassed </sub>= 409.0 ± 2.5 SE, x¯<sub>unharassed </sub>= 269.0 ± 11.0 SE), and February (x¯<sub>harassed </sub>= 447.0 ± 36.4 SE, x¯<sub>unharassed </sub>= 232.8 ± 13.5 SE). Results of this study suggest that winter harassment of Canada geese in winter has effects on the behavior and energetic expenditure that could result in lower survival and reduced conflicts in urban parks where targeted harassment is conducted.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:40am

(FISHERIES: BEHAVIOR & PHYSIOLOGY) Exposure to Harmful Algal Blooms Impairs Prey Recognition and Capture Success in a Larval Freshwater Fish
AUTHORS: Jessica Ward, Gina Lamka, Autum Auxier, Hannah Mullinax – Ball State University

ABSTRACT: Cyanobacteria are prevalent blue-green algae in freshwater systems with adverse impacts on both human health and the environment. At least 8 classes of toxins produced by cyanobacteria have been identified with the potential to affect organismal physiology and function. Of these, ß-N-methylamino-l-alanine (BMAA) and its isomer 2,4-diaminobutyric acid (DABA) are potent neurotoxic metabolites of interest because they are a risk factor for neurodegenerative diseases in humans. However, sensorimotor integration is also critical to the successful survival and reproduction of resident aquatic organisms, and these neurodegenerative cyanotoxins have the potential to modify the expression of simple and complex behaviors within individuals and the outcomes of interactions between individuals in aquatic environments. One way that this can happen is through changes that compromise an organism’s ability to correctly perceive, process and respond to relevant biotic stimuli (e.g., predators, prey, or mates). In this study, we examined the effects of DABA on the foraging behavior of a larval fish (Promelas pimephales). We exposed larvae to a range of environmentally-relevant concentrations of DABA for 21 days. We then tested larvae in prey-capture assays to assess the effect of neural disruption on the outcomes of predator-prey interactions, and recorded individual prey strikes using a high-speed camera to assess changes in cognitive and motor aspects of hunting behavior. Compared with nonexposed fish, exposure to DABA was associated with reduced foraging success and an altered ability to recognize prey. These data improve our understanding of how aquatic contaminants affect stimulus-response pathways though their effects on brain function, and suggest that even subtle contaminant-induced shifts in perception, processing, or response can have marked effects on fitness.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:40am

(WILDLIFE: WETLAND CONSERVATION) A Field Study Assessing Effects of Neonicotinoid Insecticides to Aquatic Invertebrates: Implications for Wetland-Dependent Taxa
AUTHORS: Kyle Kuechle, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, School of Natural Resources; Elisabeth B. Webb, U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, School of Natural Resources; Doreen Mengel, Missouri Department of Conservation, Resource Science Division; Anson Main, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, School of Natural Resources.

ABSTRACT: Neonicotinoid insecticides (NI) are commonly used as seed-treatments on major agricultural row crops (e.g., corn). Indeed, neonicotinoid treated agricultural crops are often planted directly in floodplain wetlands managed for wildlife, specifically waterfowl. Numerous studies have documented impacts of neonicotinoids to aquatic invertebrates in laboratory and mesocosm settings; however, there is limited information on impacts to aquatic invertebrate in field settings. We investigated invertebrate community response to planting of neonicotinoid-treated seed in managed wetland ecosystems in Missouri. In 2016, we sampled water, sediment, and aquatic invertebrates from 22 paired wetlands during spring (pre-wetland drawdown) and fall (post-wetland flood-up) followed by a third sampling period (spring 2017). During summer, portions of study wetlands were planted with either neonicotinoid-treated corn or untreated corn (control). Water and sediment concentrations of the three most common neonicotinoids were used to calculate overall NI toxicity equivalents (NI-EQs) based on an additive model of NI toxic equivalency factors. Mean total NI-EQs for sediment (0.60 μg/kg) were an order of magnitude greater than water (0.02 μg/L). Water quality parameters and pesticide concentrations were used to evaluate effects of neonicotinoid concentrations on aquatic macroinvertebrates using a series of generalized linear mixed effects models. Preliminary results indicate an overall decrease in aquatic invertebrate diversity and abundance with increasing NI-EQs in both wetland water and sediments. Post-treatment, treated wetlands had lower benthic invertebrate diversity and abundance compared to untreated wetlands, but a recovery in abundance and diversity followed in spring 2017. Our results have implications for aquatic invertebrates and wetland-dependant species (e.g., migrating birds) as neonicotinoid concentrations, although below regulatory limits, are impacting wetland ecosystems. Research results will be useful to wetland managers in making decisions regarding use of neonicotinoid seed-treatments, specifically, and potentially, provide broader considerations of the role agriculture may play in future wetland management and conservation plans.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:40am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: FISHERIES 1) Fishing for Answers: Restoration in the St. Clair-Detroit River System Improves Angling Opportunities
AUTHORS: Dana Castle, Central Michigan University, Tracy Claramunt, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Ed Roseman, U.S. Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center, Tracy Galarowicz, Central Michigan University

ABSTRACT: Within the St. Clair-Detroit River System (SCDRS), fish and wildlife habitat and water quality have historically been degraded, however in 2004, extensive restoration projects began on this system to remediate past degradation. Post-monitoring of restoration areas conveys improving biota of the region, including improvement in Burbot, Lake Sturgeon, Walleye, and Lake Whitefish. Although species are improving in the region, the response of anglers in the region remains unknown. In 2002-2005, an extensive creel survey was conducted, however, since that time, there has been no other extensive analysis of the anglers in the SCDRS. We analyzed post-restoration creel data by calculating interview catch rates, interview harvest rates, and examining supplemental questions collected by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR). We also estimated the economic value of a recent creel survey by using estimated lodging and gas expenses of interviewed anglers in the SCDRS. We examined interest in fishing in the SCDRS by examining Google Trends data. For Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River, there were larger interview catch and harvest rates in post-restoration periods than in pre-restoration periods. We determined that the 2017 open water fishery on Lake St. Clair was worth approximately $11.87 million. Search terms related to the Detroit River and show a significant upward trend, indicating a rise in fishing interest in the region. Because of the increased travel, interview catch, interview harvest rates, and interest in Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River, anglers are likely capitalizing on increased fishing opportunity in these parts of the system. Another extensive creel survey, similar to the one conducted in the early 2000s, would be helpful in further determining the influence of restoration on angling opportunities in the SCDRS and if anglers are acting to remediate restoration costs.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:50am

(FISHERIES: LIGHTNING TALK) Assessment of a Post Fish Renovation Stocking Strategy of Adult Pre-Spawn Largemouth Bass in Two Southern Iowa Impoundments
AUTHORS: Andy Jansen, Iowa DNR's Mount Ayr Fish Management and Cold Springs Fish Management Stations

ABSTRACT: Largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) abundance post-renovation and time for bluegills (Lepomis macrochirus) to grow to 8 inches have varied in impoundments following complete fish renovations. This study evaluated a post-renovation stocking strategy to increase young of year (YOY) largemouth bass (LMB) abundance that utilized pre-spawn adult (> 12 inches) LMB at the rate of 1.0/acre, in addition to the traditional stocking strategy that uses 2-inch LMB fingerlings stocked in June, and time for bluegills (BLG) to reach 8 inches at Little River Watershed Lake and Prairie Rose Lake. First year post-renovation LMB fall electrofishing catch-per-unit-effort (CPUE) for the two impoundments were 1084/hour and 430/hour, respectively. It was determined that a vast majority of the fall YOY LMB were from natural reproduction. Maximum lengths of BLG sampled in Little River Watershed Lake and Prairie Rose Lake in fall fyke nets exceeded 8 inches two years post fish renovation. It was determined that BLG did grow to 8 inches in two years with the development of a high LMB abundance the first year post-renovation. This evaluation has shown pre-spawn adult LMB stocking strategy in two renovated impoundments produced a high LMB abundance the first year post-renovation and 8-inch BLG in two years.

Monday January 28, 2019 11:50am - 12:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

12:00pm

12:00pm

Lunch Break on own
Monday January 28, 2019 12:00pm - 1:20pm
N/A

1:00pm

Poster Set-up
Monday January 28, 2019 1:00pm - 5:00pm
Superior Ballroom CD

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Data-Driven Harvest Regulations in Minnesota: Approaches, Priorities, and Northern Pike
AUTHORS: Shannon J. Fisher, Allen G. Stevens, Bethany J. Bethke – Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MNDNR) maintains fisheries management plans on more than 4,400 lakes.  To keep plans current, inform harvest regulation development, and keep pace with changing lake conditions, >650 lake surveys are completed annually.  Minnesota’s lake survey program began over 70 years ago, with the modern program established in 1993.  Survey data have informed management decisions locally and statewide.  The evolution of Northern Pike management is a key example of how Minnesota has utilized this valuable database.  During the 1980s, increasing numbers of anglers and fisheries managers became concerned about long-term declines in Northern Pike sizes.  As a result, MNDNR experimented with length-based regulations.  Using pre- and post-regulation lake survey data (1970s-early 2000s) evidence was found that length limits could improve size structure – but not uniformly across lakes.  Therefore, a limited suite of “Toolbox” regulations for lake-specific management was developed.  Pre- and post-Toolbox regulation survey data were used to perform a meta-analysis (>50 lakes) that indicated >10 years of post-data were needed to detect size structure improvements across a range of lakes.  In 2016, we strategized to improve Northern Pike management across Minnesota and three starkly different sets of spatially clustered objectives emerged.  In 2018, lakes meeting regulatory and biological criteria were divided into three zones with different length and bag limits.  Our standardized lake survey program was integral in identifying lakes included in the evaluation and will provide the necessary post-regulation data.  Given valuable lessons learned in early analyses, we know that it will take time to detect results.  Similar evaluations have proven extremely useful in the development of regulations to better manage other recreationally important species in Minnesota, including Walleye Sanders vitreus, Largemouth Bass Micropterus salmoides, and Muskellunge Esox masquinongy. 

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Combating Threats to the Eastern Massasauga with Directed Conservation Actions in Illinois
AUTHORS: Christopher A. Phillips, Sarah J. Baker, Michael J. Dreslik – Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Conservation and recovery of declining species are costly endeavors often forcing difficult decisions with limited conservation funds available. Therefore, having a firm understanding of the specific threats a species or population faces can afford the development of more targeted actions. Conservation actions focusing on the most severe threats might have the largest benefit, but they must be achievable, realistic, and measurable. Small population dynamics necessitate the protection of individuals in addition to larger-scale actions to secure the whole population. Over our long-term study of the Eastern Massasauga at Carlyle Lake, we have identified numerous threats to population persistence. We have consistently applied directed conservation actions and reassessed their utility in an adaptive framework. Herein we provide a summary of how we are combating the threats to the Carlyle Lake population through planning and implementation.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-03) Targeting eDNA Surveys for the Invasive Black Carp, Mylopharyngodon piceus
AUTHORS: Richard F Lance, Environmental Laboratory, US Army Engineer Research & Development Center; Xin Guan, Bennett Aerospace; Emy M. Monroe, Katherine D. Bockrath, Erica L. Mize – Whitney Genetics Laboratory, Midwest Fisheries Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Chris B. Rees, Northeast Fishery Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Kelly L. Baerwaldt, Midwest Fisheries Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: The Black Carp, Mylopharyngodon piceus, is an invasive species within the Mississippi River drainage that appears to be undergoing population growth and range expansion. Black carp are molluscivores that potentially threaten significant components of North America's rich indigenous diversity of freshwater bivalves. In order to help determine the presence of black carp in various waters and habitats, and to help track its spread, we have developed a suite of environmental DNA (eDNA) markers for this species. The markers were developed using whole mitochondrial genomes from 29 black carp from three countries and target three different mitochondrial DNA genes. The markers were further tested for reliability with a total of 41 black carp DNA samples and for specificity against DNA from numerous co-occurring fish species and against samples of natural waters free of black carp. Further tests to detect black carp in natural waters proved challenging, but ultimately successful. We further report on studies of which water fractions contain the bulk of black carp eDNA (the answer appears to be largely habitat dependent) and on the efficiency of different sampling options.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Toward Examining Climate Effects on Yellow Perch Recruitment: How Do Lake Erie Larval Yellow Perch Diets Vary Within a Year?
AUTHORS: Luke A. Bobay, L. Zoe Almeida, Elizabeth A. Marschall, Stuart A. Ludsin – The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: A full understanding of how climate change affects the recruitment process of fish is lacking for most populations. The possibility exists that altered temperature and precipitation patterns could interact with other factors (e.g., photoperiod) to reduce the availability of zooplankton prey to pre-recruited individuals. If preferred prey sizes or taxa are unavailable during critical periods of development (e.g., larval stage), foraging success, growth, and survival might decline. As a first step toward understanding how climate variation influences larval yellow perch (Perca flavescens) success in Lake Erie, we processed the diets of larvae captured during spring 2017 from several nearshore areas of the western basin. While we expected average zooplankton prey size in the diet to increase with yellow perch size, we were uncertain as to how availability of prey of different sizes and taxa would affect which prey types are consumed. We also did not know if larval yellow perch require a specific size or type of prey during early life, when their ability to catch large, fast prey is limited. Preliminary analyses indicate that the biomass of yellow perch diets varied both through time and between sites (Date: ?<sup>2</sup><sub>4,428</sub>= 114.3, p < 0.001, Site: ?<sup>2</sup><sub>3,428</sub>= 22.7, p < 0.001), with no obvious effect of fish size (Length: ?<sup>2</sup><sub>1,428</sub>= 0.04, p = 0.84). Interestingly, we found that some small prey items (e.g., small Cyclopoida) were primarily consumed by small yellow perch larvae (5 – 9 mm), whereas other small taxa (e.g., Bosmina) were primarily consumed by larger larvae (13 – 18 mm). Future analyses should reveal if these differences in consumption between larvae of different size are due to prey availability or a preference for specific taxonomic groups. Ultimately, these results will direct our impending inter-annual examination of larval yellow perch diets in relation to environmental conditions.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) It Takes a Village: A Collaborative Approach to Bird Conservation
AUTHORS: Matthew B. Shumar, Ohio Bird Conservation Initiative

ABSTRACT: Many species of birds migrate at night, guided in part by starfields and lunar paths. However, artificial lighting is becoming increasingly abundant on the landscape. This source of pollution has the ability to disrupt migratory cues and cause substantial mortality; birds attracted to bright lighting often fatally collide with buildings, and it is estimated that between 365 and 988 million birds are killed by collisions each year in the United States. Collaborative conservation programs designed to address bird-building collisions have been successful in a number of cities across North America—including Toronto, Chicago, and New York—by combining elements of public outreach, conservation, and research in a campaign to reduce the dangers of nighttime lighting for migrating birds. With support from a wide range of partners, including state wildlife agencies, local government, universities, and non-profit conservation organizations, Ohio’s first “Lights Out” campaign was launched in Columbus in 2012. In 2013, we initiated a study to assess the relative influence of light intensity and building height on collision rates. Results strongly suggested that minimizing lighting on tall buildings would effectively reduce collision rates. In recent years, this partnership has expanded “Lights Out” into a statewide network, with focused efforts in Ohio’s major urban centers. To date, regional branches of Ohio Lights Out have been established in seven cities. The magnitude of this conservation issue is likely greater than currently understood (e.g., more than 2,100 dead and injured birds were salvaged by volunteers in Cleveland during 2017 alone), and each city presents unique social and political challenges. There is great potential for programs such as “Lights Out,” but success will ultimately depend on cooperation among wildlife agencies, academic institutions, wildlife rehabilitators, natural history museums, building owners, city officials, and the general public.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Do Beaver and Trout Really Get Along? Some Perspectives on a Long-Term Conflict Concerning Landscape Scale Riparian Management
AUTHORS: Gary E. Whelan, Michigan Department of Natural Resources Fisheries Division

ABSTRACT: Concerns about the interactions between beavers and trout species in the Midwest have been with us for generations of fisheries and wildlife scientists.  The conflict usually centers on beavers along with riparian management that fosters their populations being a negative factor on trout populations.  While this conflict boiled in the 1990s and resulted in continuing beaver control efforts in many Midwestern states to enhance trout populations, no recent effort has been made to summarize the current knowledge about this issue and this symposium looks to address this void.   This presentation will set the stage for subsequent symposium speakers and will provide a brief overview of how beavers affect the landscape, generally positively for trout in high gradient stream systems and in a mixed way in low gradient systems.  Beavers that build dam complexes alter riparian forest types, change stream nutrient dynamics, and can alter system hydrology with resulting effects on stream fisheries which can be positive or negative for trout production depending on the landscape context.  The management of riparian zones to enhance beaver production, typically toward young succession forest types, has similar implications for trout production by changing shade and temperature dynamics.  Subsequent symposium speakers will elaborate on these points and provide attendees on the latest information on this long-term management issue.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:20pm

(FISHERIES: RIVERS & STREAMS) Fine-scale Spatial Distribution of Resident Fish Species in Lower-order Tributaries of the Great Lakes
AUTHORS: Cynthia Nau, Dr. Patrick Forsythe – University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

ABSTRACT: Small, lower-order (1<sup>st</sup>-3<sup>rd</sup>) tributaries of the Great Lakes, including those of Green Bay and Lake Michigan, have been largely understudied relative to the open water and large rivers in the region. Nonetheless, recent research suggests that these aquatic ecosystems may play a vital role as reproductive, nursery and foraging habitat for the highly varied assemblage of fish species resident to the area. Diverse stream geomorphology and anthropogenic influences have resulted in a high degree of variation in stream condition across the watersheds of the region. This large environmental gradient allows for exploration of the ecology of resident fish species in relation to abiotic variability. The primary objective of this study is to quantify the diversity, distribution and habitat selection of resident fishes in intricate detail. This assessment has been carried out on seven Green Bay tributaries and two Lake Michigan tributaries of varying stream condition. Fish and habitat surveys were conducted over a one-kilometer reach, which was further divided into 20-meter sub-reaches using block nets. Preliminary results suggest that the fish community is a unique function of each tributary and that community composition changes as distance from the stream’s mouth increases. The detailed nature of this study will serve to inform restorative management actions, maximizing benefit to individual streams and fish species. Understudied non-game fishes may especially profit from this habitat association knowledge by allowing restoration projects to account for their species-specific requirements. Due to the vast amount of variation found in the Green Bay sub-watershed, these species to habitat relationships may be applicable to tributaries across the Great Lakes region.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:20pm

(WILDLIFE: WATERFOWL) Habitat Heterogeneity and Wetland-dependent Bird Use in Wisconsin's Glacial Habitat Restoration Area
AUTHORS: Zack Loken, University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point; Jacob Straub, University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point; Rachel Schultz, State University of New York at Brockport

ABSTRACT: The Glacial Habitat Restoration Area (GHRA) is a 558,879-acre restoration zone in east-central Wisconsin. The GHRA was designed to enhance wildlife habitat, especially for waterbirds, through wetland restorations. We observed and counted all waterbirds on wetland basins from April – May of 2017 and 2018 using fixed location focal scans. We categorized study wetlands into 3 groups based on hydrologic modification: scrape; scrape plus wetlands with ditch plug, ditch-fill, and/or tile break; and scrape plus berm and/or berm with a water control structure. Two reference groups were included: Waterfowl Production Areas and unmodified sites without basins. Wetland plant communities were categorized following the Natural Heritage Inventory database, mapped using aerial imagery, and field checked for accuracy. After plant communities had been digitized, habitat heterogeneity was assessed within each wetland property using an interspersion-juxtaposition index (IJI). Greater values of IJI indicated that community types were more evenly dispersed throughout the wetland than areas with large blocks of similar vegetation. Wetlands with diverse habitat types distributed throughout their basins may be more attractive to waterfowl than those with a homogenous composition. Analysis of year-one data found that habitat heterogeneity, of the 38 properties, ranged from 17.7 to 85.5 and differed among hydrologic modification categories (P = 0.04). Data from year two is currently undergoing analysis. Our results will be used to assess landscape scale factors that might influence the use of restored wetlands by wetland-dependent bird species.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

1:20pm

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: WILDLIFE) Use of Surveys to Enhance R3 Programs
AUTHORS: Kristen Black, Illinois Learn to Hunt; Daniel Stephens, Illinois Learn to Hunt; Craig Miller, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Surveys are commonly used to drive the development of public programs and to determine efficacy of those programs. This presentation will discuss how the Illinois Learn to Hunt program has used a series of surveys given to program participants and the public to drive the creation of a successful hunter recruitment, retention, and reengagement (R3) program in Illinois. Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to, survey creation, survey implementation, statistical analyses, and how survey results affect program management and execution.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) First Year Evaluation of a Regulation Change for Walleye at Cedar Bluff Reservoir, Kansas
AUTHORS: Susan Steffen, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism

ABSTRACT: A 21-inch minimum length limit (MLL) on Walleye at Cedar Bluff Reservoir, Kansas, was implemented in 2018 to prevent recruitment overfishing by reducing exploitation of spawning-sized Walleye. Initially, anglers opposed the 21-inch MLL and voiced this through various outlets: on the 2013 Kansas Licensed Angler Survey, at commission meetings in 2017, and during the public meeting about the MLL in July of 2017. To better understand anglers’ feelings toward the MLL, I added supplemental questions at the end of the access point creel survey that was conducted from March to October 2018. Anglers that agreed to answer the additional questions were asked about the number of days they fished at Cedar Bluff Reservoir last year, their level of support for the 21-inch MLL on Walleye, and their confidence in KDWPT. Confidence in KDWPT was measured by four questions in a Likert scale format based on responses from 1 to 5 where 1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree. I was able to obtain useable responses from 200 anglers from March through early September 2018. The average age of anglers was 47 years old (SD = 16.13) and they fished on average 22 days (SD = 26.29) last year at Cedar Bluff Reservoir. The plurality, or 34%, of anglers interviewed supported the 21-inch MLL on Walleye. Confidence in KDWPT was high, with Likert scale means ranging from 3.95 to 4.10. Results from the remainder of anglers interviewed in September and October of 2018 will be presented as well. The creel survey and supplemental interview questions will continue through 2020 to determine if angler support for the Walleye regulation changes as the Walleye population responds to the regulation as well.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Conservation and Recovery of the Eastern Massasauga in Ohio
AUTHORS: Gregory Lipps, Jr., Nicholas Smeenk – Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Once widely distributed throughout the glaciated portion of Ohio, the Eastern Massasauga is now extirpated at all but 12 sites in the state.  As part of a statewide comprehensive conservation plan for the species, three meetings with resource managers and researchers were convened in 2017-2018 to document the status of each site and prioritize conservation activities.  We developed a worksheet to record multiple metrics that describe the status of populations, habitat conditions, and changes to these values over time.  Occupied Massasauga sites in Ohio can generally be described as having small populations (estimated mean of sites: 59 adults; range: 3-433) but high densities (mean: 5.75 adults/ha; range: 0.7-15).  The amount of available herbaceous habitat at each site varies greatly, but is less than 28 ha for 75% of sites, with a mean of 51% of available habitat at each site known to be occupied (range: 1.5-100%).  The greatest challenge to conserving known populations is maintaining herbaceous habitat through snake-friendly management techniques to control woody and invasive species.  Recovery to more robust populations with predicted long-term viability will require expanding the amount of suitable habitat adjacent to occupied fields (which we have observed to be colonized at two sites) and investigating techniques for augmenting declining populations and repatriating snakes to suitable habitat. 

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-03) Environmental DNA Monitoring of Effectiveness of Bigheaded Carp Removal from Creve Coeur Lake, Missouri
AUTHORS: Catherine A. Richter, Katy E. Klymus, Nathan Thompson, Jeffrey C. Jolley, Duane C. Chapman – U.S. Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Creve Coeur Lake is a large natural floodplain lake intermittently connected to the Missouri River near St. Louis, Missouri. The lake has been invaded by Bighead Carp (Hypophthalmichthys nobilis) and Silver Carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix), collectively known as Bigheaded Carp. Both are native to Asia. The invasion has resulted in impairment of the native crappie (Pomoxis spp.) fishery, and hazards to recreational users. Fish can enter the lake from the Missouri River only during high water events. During the winter of 2017-2018, an intensive removal effort was conducted using the unified fishing method. A total of approximately 108,129 kg of Bigheaded Carp was removed from the lake in February 2018. Monitoring of Bigheaded Carp environmental DNA (eDNA) concentrations was conducted at intervals before and after the removal effort. Water was sampled at 53 locations equally spaced along transects covering the entire surface area of Creve Coeur Lake, a smaller upstream connected lake (Mallard Lake), and the channel between the two lakes. We measured eDNA concentrations with quantitative PCR using two marker sets specific to the genus Hypophthalmichthys, and thus able to detect and quantify DNA from both species with equal efficiency. Our results showed a decrease in eDNA concentration with decreasing water temperature over three sampling events before the removal effort, in October 2017, November 2017, and January 2018. After the removal effort, we observed an increase in eDNA in March 2018, possibly resulting from the presence of injured fish and carcasses, followed by a sharp decrease in eDNA in April 2018. Our results illustrate the utility of eDNA monitoring of management actions, the advantages of repeated sampling over time, and some challenges associated with this application of eDNA analysis.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Lake Huron Prey Fish Community Affects Saginaw Bay Predator/Prey Dynamics and Management Implications
AUTHORS: David G. Fielder, Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Saginaw Bay historically supported large Walleye and Yellow Perch populations and fisheries. Walleye diet from 1989 to 2002 was dominated by Clupeids (Gizzard Shad and Alewives). Alewives from the main basin of Lake Huron used the bay for spawning and nursery grounds. Alewives disappeared from most of the lake as a result of a profound foodweb paradigm change in 2003. Walleye diet in the bay has become more diverse with age-0 Yellow Perch now comprising a major component. Yellow Perch have exhibited good reproductive success but mortality between age-0 and age-1 is now routinely upwards of 95%, resulting in failed recruitment to the larger population. It appears that Saginaw Bay’s predator/prey dynamics depend on a predation buffer from main basin pelagic planktivores with Cisco historically playing that role. With Alewives largely extirpated and Cisco not recovered, a broken linkage may exist resulting in suppressed Yellow Perch population and fisheries. Fishery managers are commencing a Cisco restoration initiative in Central Lake Huron partly in hopes of addressing this situation.   

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) The Effect of Weather on Bird-building Collisions in Downtown Minneapolis
AUTHORS: Sirena Lao, Oklahoma State University; Abigail W. Anderson, University of Minnesota; Robert B. Blair, University of Minnesota; Joanna W. Eckles, Audubon Minnesota; Reed J. Turner, Audubon Minnesota; Scott R. Loss, Oklahoma State University

ABSTRACT: Collisions with buildings are a major source of human-caused bird mortality, especially for migratory species. Most bird-building collision studies have assessed building or landscape-related factors that correlate with mortality, such as glass area, the proximity of glass to vegetation, and the amount of surrounding greenspace. However, very little research has investigated factors causing temporal variation in bird-building collisions, and there is no published research that rigorously quantifies the influence of weather conditions on collision rates of migrating birds. During spring and fall migration, we hypothesize that more collisions occur under two scenarios: when conditions for migration are favorable (e.g., clear conditions, favorable tailwinds, and/or after the passage of a fall cold front), and hence more birds are moving; and when visibility is poor (e.g., fog, storms, or low cloud ceiling), causing migrating birds to potentially “fall out” in urban areas where they may be attracted to artificial light at night. To assess the effect of weather on collisions, we used counts from daily carcass surveys conducted during spring and fall migration of 2017 and 2018 at 21 buildings in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota, and we compiled hourly weather data from the Minneapolis-Saint Paul weather station for each night from sunset to sunrise. We found that variables associated with favorable migration conditions, including wind direction and temperature, had the largest effect on collision mortality. We also found that weather conditions during certain times of night are especially important, and that collisions can be associated with weather conditions from one or two days prior to the night they occur. Understanding the effect of specific weather conditions on bird-building collisions will allow for the use of weather forecasts to better predict when major collision events will occur, and will therefore allow preemptive actions to be taken to reduce collision mortality.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Trout Stream Enhancement and Beaver Management Challenges: A Trout Angler-Conservationists Perspective
AUTHORS: Bryan Burroughs, Michigan Trout Unlimited

ABSTRACT: As other symposium presenters will address in detail, the role of beaver and riparian management along trout streams is multi-faceted, presenting both opportunities and threats; the latter of which are abundant when considering Midwest trout stream hydrology and fluvial geomorphology.  In recent times, recreational beaver trapping activities has become minimal, which has lead to long-term establishment of high abundance beaver colonies, and extensive beaver dam complexes.  In these situations, the negative impacts to trout stream management goals increase, and the resources required to ameliorate these impacts and restore trout streams dramatically increase.  Michigan Trout Unlimited is increasingly encountering these conditions, and has gained several recent experiences with addressing these restoration challenges.  The numerous stream temperature, aquatic organism connectivity, and stream morphology impacts will be overviewed.  Water temperature usually increases as the dam complexes cumulatively act to increase solar warming of the waters, upstream and downstream essential available fish habitats are disconnected, and sedimentation of the stream channel results from several mechanisms, leaving an overly wide and shallow river channel.  This talk will also overview the restoration efforts that must be undergone sequentially, to address these impacts.  These include active beaver trapping and removal, wood debris installation via brush bundling and strategic large wood placement, and sequential dam breaching done to manage fine sediment transport, sequestration and retention, as well as channel incision goals.  The case of well-established beaver colonies and beaver dam complexes, represents a common scenario that can result from diminished beaver trapping and riparian management strategies, and presents a high level of negative impact to trout streams and trout population management.  The effort required to ameliorate these conditions is extensive, and illustrates a specific important consideration in the balance of beaver, trout and riparian management.  

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:40pm

(FISHERIES: RIVERS & STREAMS) Seasonal Use of Riffles, Lateral Pools, and Non-Wadeable Deep Pools by Fishes in the Neosho River, Kansas
AUTHORS: Sam Schneider, David Edds – Emporia State University

ABSTRACT: Lotic ecosystems are characterized by riffle–pool mesohabitats that support discrete fish assemblages. Most previous mesohabitat studies on fishes have focused on riffles and wadeable pools in small streams, and only recently have non-wadeable, deep pool mesohabitats been examined. Previous research suggests that deep pools are vital seasonal refugia for various fish species during times of adverse physicochemical conditions, yet the deep pool fish assemblage is often not sampled during all seasons, especially winter. We are comparing fish abundance and species richness at the mesohabitat scale in riffles, shallow lateral pools, and non-wadeable deep pools in the Neosho River, Kansas, and are examining relationships between fish abundance, species richness, water temperature, dissolved oxygen, and season, with emphasis on investigating possible seasonal use of deep-pool refugia. We are using a Siamese trawl to sample these three mesohabitat types monthly at nine sites. Summer results suggest that mesohabitats are discrete depending, however, on whether catch is analyzed by m<sup>2 </sup>or m<sup>3</sup>. Riffles contain more fish per m<sup>3</sup> and more fish species per m<sup>3</sup>, but shallow lateral pools contain more species per m<sup>2</sup>. This research will provide insight on seasonal mesohabitat use and the importance of seasonal deep pool refugia in warmwater rivers of the Midwest.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:40pm

(WILDLIFE: WATERFOWL) Stopover Duration and Habitat Use of Spring Migrating Dabbling Ducks in the Wabash River Valley
AUTHORS: Benjamin R. Williams, Thomas J. Benson – Illinois Natural History Survey, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; Aaron P. Yetter, Joseph D. Lancaster – Forbes Biological Station, Illinois Natural History Survey, University of Illinois; Heath M. Hagy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Spring migration is an important and often under-studied period of the waterfowl annual cycle. Stopover sites along migration routes contain habitats and resources required by waterfowl to rest and refuel before continuing north to the breeding grounds.  The Wabash River Valley (WRV) in southeastern Illinois provides habitat for over 500,000 dabbling ducks each spring.  Despite the heavy use of this region, information regarding stopover duration and habitat use of waterfowl is lacking.  Stopover duration, or the length of time an individual spends in a distinct region, is an important metric for waterfowl managers to consider while planning for the needs and required resources of migrating birds.  Stopover duration for mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) and green-winged teal (Anas crecca) was approximately 17 days (95% CI:  12.6–22.9 days).  This is shorter than current estimates used by conservation planners and may shift objectives.  Additionally, mallards and green-winged teal used emergent and woody wetland habitat at rates highly disproportional to the availability of those habitats on the landscape.  Both species tended to avoid sites with greater amounts of agriculture in the surrounding landscape, while sites surrounded by greater amounts of open water, upland forest, and upland grassland were more likely to be used.  There was also a considerable amount of use in areas under conservation easements, suggesting the importance of these easements in waterfowl management.  All of this information will help land managers and conservation planners direct funding to the most important habitats in the WRV and ensure sufficient resources for waterfowl utilizing the region each spring.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

1:40pm

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: WILDLIFE) Psychological Involvement and Constraints to Hunting Participation: Implications for R3 Research
AUTHORS: Adam Landon, Illinois Natural History Survey; Craig Miller, Illinois Natural History Survey; Jerry Vaske, Colorado State University; James Absher, Environmental Sociologist

ABSTRACT: Research on recruitment, retention, and re-engagement (R3) has become increasingly important for fish and wildlife management agencies that are seeking to bolster participation in hunting and fishing, and ensure fiscal sustainability through increased license sales. To date, however, much of the literature surrounding R3 has been ad hoc with respect to theory explaining patterns of recreation behavior. In this study, we drew on the human dimensions literature to understand the influence of psychological involvement and perceived constraints on hunters’ commitment to the activity as potential new explanatory frameworks for R3 research. We hypothesized that hunters’ psychological involvement in the activity positively influenced their prolonged engagement, operationalized from patterns of hunting license purchase, and that perceived constraints had a negative effect. Data for this study were drawn from a large-scale cohort-based survey of Illinois hunters (n=6,000). Hunters were randomly sampled in age cohorts at two-year intervals based on their date of hunting license purchase over the period 2006-2018. Results suggested that psychological involvement may play an important role in hunters’ commitment to the activity, but that hunters placed different levels of importance on different aspects of involvement. Findings further suggested that perceived constraints negatively influenced commitment, whereby more constrained hunters’ were less engaged over time. Results of this study have implications for mechanism for R3 activity. Although demographic changes underpin broad patterns of hunting license sales, additional factors like involvement and constraints may account for commitment to the activity.

Monday January 28, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Using Standardized Assessments to Evaluate Harvest Regulations in Illinois: Let's Start the Discussion
AUTHORS: Michael J. Mounce, Division of Fisheries, Illinois Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: The Division of Fisheries in the Illinois Department of Natural Resources lists specific protocol in our Manual of Operations for standardized sampling methods for the evaluation of both fish populations and the success of stocked fish. We do not have standardized methods specified for evaluating harvest regulations. Our biologists realize that this would be a valuable tool. The Division of Fisheries does have a standard form for submitting harvest regulations requests/suggestions for review by piers, mid-level managers, and finally approval by the Chief of Fisheries. This form does not include any request or requirements for evaluating the suggested regulation. The AFS book, "Standard Methods for Sampling North American Freshwater Fishes" suggested sampling methods for specific species would be a great foundation if these methods can be employed prior to implementing the harvest regulation. Effectively and adequately collecting data about the "three" rate functions, recruitment, growth, and mortality, is critical. The estimation of angler mortality is a critical component of any harvest regulation proposal. Angler harvest/creel surveys should be the foundation of any harvest regulation proposal and evaluation, as the success of any regulation will only be realized where angling mortality is a/the critical factor in limiting the quality or viability of a fishery. Many state agencies, including the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, are facing staffing and funding shortages for a wide variety of reasons and this affects their ability to critically evaluate the effectiveness of harvest regulations, or propose and implement new sampling protocol. However, the development of methods and tools (supporting software) to appropriately propose and evaluate harvest regulations would be highly valuable asset to fisheries managers, the resources they manage, the agencies and constituents they work for, and ultimately the communities that benefit economically from fisheries with greater stability and improved quality.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Validating a Habitat Suitability Index Model for the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake in Southern Michigan
AUTHORS: Stephanie A. Shaffer, Michigan State University; Henry Campa, III, Michigan State University; Daniel Kennedy, Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Gary Roloff, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: The eastern massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus catenatus) is a federally threatened species ranging throughout the Great Lakes region. Conservation concerns for the species include declining availability of suitable areas due to habitat degradation and fragmentation. Our goal was to quantify habitat suitability for massasaugas using the Bailey (2010) habitat suitability index (HSI) model and validate this model throughout southern Michigan at 27 20-ha study sites. Sites were selected based on historical or current presence of massasaugas. Following methods described in the HSI model, in 2015 and 2016 we measured vegetation characteristics at 10 - 12 randomly selected locations within each site. As described by the HSI model, we quantified % live herbaceous cover (optimal suitability 60-100%), % dead herbaceous cover (51.5-96%), stem density of trees and shrubs > 3 m (0-58 per ha), basal area of trees and shrubs > 3 m (0-12.1 m2/ha), % area of early deciduous upland (0-57%), and % area of early deciduous wetland (23-73%). To validate the model, we used a resource selection probability function to identify disproportionate use by massasaugas of microhabitat structures defined as important for massasaugas by the HSI model (i.e., % live and dead herbaceous cover, number and average DBH of stems). Based on HSI modeling, habitat suitability rankings for massasauga locations compared to random locations throughout the study sites corroborated structures defined as “optimal” for the species by the HSI model. The resource selection probability function illustrated a positive relationship between massasauga use and the amount of live and dead herbaceous cover, and a negative relationship between use and the number and average DBH of woody stems. Our validation of the Bailey (2010) HSI model indicates that this habitat model is applicable when defining massasauga habitat throughout habitats of varying quality within Southern Michigan.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-03) Determine What Fishes Adult Sea Lamprey Parasitized by Barcoding DNA in Their Feces
AUTHORS: Nicholas Johnson, U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Chris Merkes, Joel Putnam – U.S. Geological Survey, Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center

ABSTRACT: Sea lamprey are controlled in the Great Lakes to reduce damage to valuable fisheries. Sea lamprey control is effective, but damage caused by remaining sea lamprey is poorly defined because because sea lamprey feed on blood and traditional gut content analysis has not possible.  Here, we test the concept that sea lamprey diet can be quantified by barcoding DNA in sea lamprey feces.  Specifically, we determined the percentage of fecal samples containing measureable DNA from host fishes when collected from (1) recently fed parasitic sea lamprey, (2) fasted parasitic sea lamprey transitioning to the adult stage, and (3) adult sea lamprey captured from a spawning stream.   If successful, the method could help managers better interpret lake trout wounding rates by providing insight as to how often hosts alternative to lake trout are targeted by sea lamprey. Ultimately, our vision is that adult sea lamprey assessment in each Great Lake may be able to produce an annual estimate of abundance and an estimate what fishes that cohort of adult sea lamprey were feeding on, so that fish managers could estimate damage caused to specific fish stocks.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Food Web Interactions Among Walleyes, Lake Whitefish, and Yellow Perch in Green Bay
AUTHORS: Daniel Isermann, Lucas Koenig, Daniel Dembkowski – Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit; Iyob Tsehaye, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Wesley Larson, USGS-Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit; Scott Hansen, Steve Hogler; Tammie Paoli – Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Troy Zorn, Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Green Bay supports important fisheries for walleyes, lake whitefish, and yellow perch and these species likely interact in a variety of ways. A better understanding of these interactions is needed to guide management decisions. Specifically, there are concerns that high walleye abundance could negatively influence abundance of yellow perch and lake whitefish, primarily through predation. However, the prevalence of round gobies within the ecosystem may provide a predation buffer for yellow perch and lake whitefish. Moreover, the lake whitefish population in and around Green Bay is comprised of multiple genetic stocks. Consequently, if walleye predation on lake whitefish varies across time and space, this predation could affect certain whitefish stocks to a greater degree than others. To help address some of these uncertainties, our research objectives are to determine if: 1) lake whitefish and yellow perch represent important prey for walleyes in Green Bay; 2) diets of these three species vary spatially and temporally and if diet overlap among species is evident; 3) the extent of walleye predation is sufficiently high to influence recruitment potential of lake whitefish and yellow perch and 4) extent of walleye predation varies among individual stocks of lake whitefish. We are integrating an intensive assessment of diet composition for all three species with bioenergetic modeling and genetic stock identification to address our objectives. We will discuss the innovative experimental framework we are using to address these objectives and provide preliminary results of our diet analyses.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Using Citizen Scientist Data to Elucidate Drivers of Urban Bird-window Collisions
AUTHORS: Jonathan Rice, Luke DeGroote, Matt Webb, Jake Slyder – Carnegie Museum of Natural History

ABSTRACT: Throughout the spring (April-May) and fall (Sept-Aug) migrations of 2014 – 2016, citizen scientists searched for birds that had collided with buildings in downtown Pittsburgh, PA, USA.  These volunteers spent 965 hours searching an area encompassing 217.7 ha comprised of skyscrapers, low commercial buildings, apartment buildings, and city parks.  Volunteers found 705 dead or injured birds, 218 in the spring and 487 in the fall. We delineated building sides for all buildings with collisions (n=278), and for randomly selected buildings without collisions (n=65).  We quantified physical characteristics of the building and adjacent land cover using GIS and field visits (presences and extent of overhangs, percentage of windows, reflectivity of windows, rugosity, and presence of landscaping).  Bird-window collisions were more frequent at larger, structurally complex buildings with nearby vegetative cover.  Our results demonstrate that not all buildings are equally dangerous for birds.  Furthermore, future bird-window collisions could be mitigated if architects and urban planners design buildings with less glass, fewer alcoves, and less nearby vegetation.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Beaver as a Provider of Ecological Services for Fish and Wildlife
AUTHORS: Kerry Fitzpatrick, Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Through their dam-building and feeding activities, beaver alter the hydrology, channel morphology, biogeochemical pathways, and community productivity of streams. The literature documents that streams with beaver are substantially different from those without beaver: • Beaver are a primary disturbance regime in northern hemisphere forests. They create wetlands, forest openings, and early successional patches in what would otherwise be mature forest.• Beaver ponds increase riparian habitat, create favorable conditions for aquatic plants, and sub-irrigate nearby vegetation. Riparian plant communities are biologically more diverse in the presence of beaver.• Beaver create conditions, favorable for an entire suite of wildlife species, that are in limited supply in streams without beaver. For some wildlife, beaver-created habitat is essential to maintain a large portion of their populations.• Beaver have been shown to reduce peak flood levels, maintain flow during droughts, and reduce the variability of flow compared to streams without beaver dams.• Water that flows out of beaver dams has lower turbidity and sediment levels than that entering ponds, resulting in cleaner substrates downstream than would occur without beaver.• The stair-step profile of streams with beaver have a lower kinetic gradient, which reduces scouring and erosion. Streams with a history of beaver are more braided, wider, and have larger and deeper pools.• Streams with beaver capture and process organic matter more efficiently and closer to its source than streams without beaver. High nutrient levels and solar exposure yield the high productivity associated with beaver ponds and meadows.• Water passing through beaver ponds has an elevated acid neutralizing capacity, which can modify the pH of water originating from acidic sources such as peat bogs, conifer forests, or tannic streams.Beaver are increasingly being used as an economical stream restoration tool. This presentation outlines the rationale for maintaining or re-introducing beaver for the ecological services they provide.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:00pm

(FISHERIES: RIVERS & STREAMS) Comparison of Geomorphological Characteristics of the Wabash and Ohio Rivers and Their Impacts on Fish Assemblages
AUTHORS: Jeff Robbins, Dr. Mark Pyron – Ball State University

ABSTRACT: Streams are continuously changing systems, which makes them a challenging aquatic environment to quantify. River ecosystem models (River Continuum Concept, Flood Pulse Concept) define streams using longitudinal or lateral gradients, but neither is effective at defining stream geomorphology links to the biota. The Riverine Ecosystem Synthesis (RES) was developed to incorporate geomorphological structures of streams in coordination with their delineation. The RES divides rivers and streams into Functional Process Zones that are repeated throughout the river using physical characteristics and other variables. The RES defines FPZs using an ArcGIS model called RESonate. The model uses geology and elevation variables to determine floodplains, valley sizes, and river channels, which are then analyzed and processed into FPZs. This GIS model is relatively novel and therefore not many macro level watersheds have been processed through RESonate. The Wabash and Ohio Rivers have a combined stretch of over 2000 km of waterway through agricultural, urban, and forested land. At this time, no rivers in the Midwest United States have been analyzed using RESonate. The Wabash and Ohio Rivers contain high fish and wildlife biodiversity that have recreational and conservational value. The RESonate model will generate FPZs for the river that were previously unknown.Fish species inhabit environments best suited to their ecology that is dictated by substrate composition, large woody debris, and local hydraulics. I plan to use the RESonate model to identify FPZs at fish collection sites where we have longterm data. One goal is to test if fish species are using specific FPZs. This technique has not yet been tested for any fish assemblages. Determining FPZs of fish species in large Midwest Rivers can help with future management and conservation goals.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:00pm

(WILDLIFE: WATERFOWL) Wood Duck Breeding Season Survival and Habitat Use
AUTHORS: K. Kali Rush, Jacob N. Straub, Matt Palumbo – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: The Wood Duck (Aix sponsa) is a focal species in the Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes Region Joint Venture’s (JV) waterfowl habitat conservation strategy. The JV estimates the regional breeding population is 145,000 less than their population objective. In Wisconsin, the wood duck is the second most abundant breeding duck, but their population is declining like other Great Lakes States populations. To better understand population vital rates that could be related to the observed declines in abundance, our objectives were to quantify hen survival and hen and brood habitat use during the breeding season. We captured female wood ducks using decoy and nest box traps from 7 April to 5 July 2017 and 22 April to 20 May 2018, prior to nest initiation, and fitted hens with VHF radio transmitters (ATS 3930, 7g). Hen survival was estimated and compared between breeding status and among predominant habitat type used including emergent wetlands, scrub-shrub, and forested wetlands. We also monitored individuals and nest sites to estimate breeding propensity, clutch size, and nest success. In 2017 and 2018, 43 female wood ducks were captured. We used a known-fate model in program R to model hen survival as a function of breeding status (i.e. attempted nest or did not attempt nest) and habitat types. This approach yielded heretofore unavailable hen and brood survival estimates for breeding wood ducks in the state of Wisconsin to improve our knowledge of how wood duck populations are changing. 

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:00pm

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: WILDLIFE) Guiding Hunter Recruitment, Retention, and Reactivation: A Market-Driven Approach
AUTHORS: Dan Stephens, Kristen Black, Dr. Craig Miller – Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Hunters in Illinois have long faced constraints to hunting. Socioeconomic and demographic trends suggest that the public is becoming isolated from the relevancy and importance of hunting. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Natural History Survey have partnered on an adult hunter recruitment initiative aimed at addressing a long-term decline in hunter numbers. In order to develop an objective strategy to mitigate the decline of hunting participation in Illinois, an analysis of market segments, messaging, and imagery is needed to guide hunter recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) efforts. Using web tracking, hunter harvest surveys, license buying data, focus groups, and socioeconomic data the Learn to Hunt program was able to define distinct market segments, market characteristics, and marketing themes. These market segments are defined as: locavores, nature lovers, competitors, and social enthusiasts. Web tracking through newsletters, social media, and program website analytics allowed for testing the response rate of various messages and imagery. Moving forward, R3 programs will need to develop a comprehensive marketing plan that cumulatively addresses market segmentation aimed at testing the effectiveness of various messaging themes and imagery.  

Monday January 28, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Maintaining Quality Fisheries in Small Public Lakes Using Restrictive Harvest Regulations
AUTHORS: Bryan Kinter, Mike Wilkerson – Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: Overharvest is a common result of opening small lakes and reservoirs to unregulated public fishing. In lakes comprised primarily of largemouth bass and sunfish (Lepomis spp.), populations dominated by large, older sunfish and abundant largemouth bass quickly become dominated by abundant, small sunfish and few largemouth bass. This can occur after only one year of public fishing and results in a decline in angler use and satisfaction. Maintaining quality fisheries in small lakes requires restrictive harvest regulations of both sunfish and largemouth bass, and frequent evaluation of these regulations is required. Using a combination of trapnet and electrofishing surveys, harvest quotas, length limits, and bag limits, the ODNR-Division of Wildlife successfully maintained quality sunfish/largemouth bass fisheries on the Lake La Su An Wildlife Area from 1983-2011, after these lightly-fished, privately owned lakes were opened to public fishing. Each spring, trapnet and electrofishing surveys were conducted to evaluate bluegill and largemouth bass abundance and size structure. Bluegill harvest quotas were generated based on these estimates while restrictive length limits (minimum or slot) were set for largemouth bass. A complete creel census monitored harvest. Bluegill relative stock density (RSD) on Lake La Su An averaged 40.8 from 1987-2011 and largemouth bass electrofishing CPE averaged 371 fish/hour. Over 45% of bluegill harvested were greater than 200 mm in total length. The Lake La Su An fishery demonstrates that restrictive harvest regulations can be used to maintain quality fisheries in small lakes open to public fishing. However, extensive agency resources are required to collect the data needed to manage these types of fisheries.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) An Experimental Assessment of Habitat Restoration Efforts for Eastern Massasaugas in Pennsylvania
AUTHORS: Howard K. Reinert, The College of New Jersey; Lauretta M. Bushar, Arcadia University; B. Scott Fiegel, Ecological Associates, LLC; Brandon M. Ruhe, Mid-Atlantic Center for Herpetology and Conservation; Christopher A. Urban, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission

ABSTRACT: Sistrurus catenatus in Pennsylvania has experienced a massive reduction in its distribution over the past 100 years, and it is now limited to four isolated populations. One of the greatest threats to these remaining populations is the succession of open, wetland and meadow habitat (previously maintained by cattle grazing and hay production) to forest. This study took an experimental approach to determine the efficacy of forest removal to re-establish suitable habitat. The study site selected had served as the site of the first telemetric field study of massasaugas in Pennsylvania from 1976-78. At that time the area supported a large population of snakes, and 28 ha of occupied habitat. By 2012, maturation of conifer plantation plantings and encroaching deciduous hardwood forest had reduced the area of open habitat to 2.5 ha. During the winter of 2012, 10 ha of forest was convert to open habitat by a combination of commercial logging, mulching of woody debris, and seeding with native grasses and forbs. Radio tracking of snakes began one year prior to habitat restoration (Spring 2012) and continued for three years after initial restoration activities (to Fall 2015). A total of 24 male, non-gravid female, and gravid female massasaugas were monitored. Prior to restoration activity (2012) and immediately following forest removal (2013) snakes did not utilize the newly altered habitat. In 2014, 9 out of the 15 monitored snakes used the restoration area, and 36.5% of all observations were in the restored habitat. In 2015, all 6 monitored snakes used the restoration area, and 52.5% of all observation were in the restored habitat. Successful foraging, mating, gestation, and overwintering were observed in restored habitat indicating that the restoration successfully re-created suitable habitat. The observations further indicate that massasaugas had the ability to rapidly locate and utilize newly created habitat.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-03) DNA-based Dietary Analysis of Invasive Flathead Catfish: A Case Study from the Edisto River, South Carolina
AUTHORS: Aaron P. Maloy, Stephanie Dowell, Roman Crumpton, James Henne, Julie C. Schroeter, Christopher B. Rees, Meredith L. Bartron – U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris) are large, primarily piscivorous, predators native to Gulf Coast drainages of the Mobile, Mississippi and Rio Grande River.  Intentional stockings outside of their native range were common in the early to mid-20<sup>th</sup> century, many of which resulted in self-recruiting populations that have become invasive.  Flathead catfish alter native species communities through direct predation and are considered one of the most biologically harmful invasive fish. Obtaining detailed trophic data through traditional dietary analysis is difficult due to the lack of morphological characteristics of prey and because fish are commonly taken with empty stomachs. To address these challenges a study was undertaken on the Edisto River, South Carolina to assess the trophic ecology of invasive flathead catfish using DNA-based dietary methods. A combination of DNA barcoding and metabarcoding revealed a varied diet of crustaceans, bivalves, eggs and numerous fish species.  Traditional COI barcoding was useful for determining the identity of larger remnants of prey items of both fish and invertebrates.  Metabarcoding of the 12S rRNA gene targeted fish species and was successful at identifying prey even when morphological examination determined stomachs to be empty.  A higher rate of prey detection was observed in material collected from the stomachs than that obtained from the intestines.  Used in conjunction, the two methods provided a more complete understanding of flathead catfish predation than any one method in isolation.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Spatial Patterns and Temporal Trends of Predator Diets in Lake Huron
AUTHORS: Katie Kierczynski, Michigan State University; Brian Roth, Michigan State University; Ed Roseman, USGS Great Lakes Science Center; Robin DeBruyne, University of Toledo/USGS Great Lakes Science Center

ABSTRACT: Lake Huron has undergone dramatic changes in the past few decades. Introductions of non-native species have drastically altered the food web and nutrient pathways. In the mid-2000s, alewife collapsed closely followed by Chinook salmon. Since then, some native prey species (e.g. bloaters) and some invasive species (e.g. round goby) have increased in abundance. Populations of native predators walleye and lake trout have also increased substantially, but there are now questions regarding the sustainability of current predator populations as well as uncertainty regarding connections among food web members given changes in prey populations and shifts in productivity. Predator diets can be used as evidence that could shed light on the sustainability of the food web. However, the last angler-caught predator diet study in Lake Huron was conducted between 2009 and 2011 (Roseman et al. 2014). That study demonstrated increased reliance on round goby for lake trout and walleye, but Chinook salmon continued to be dependent on alewife despite their exceptionally low abundance. The goals of the present study are to investigate how predator-prey relationships have changed since the 2009-2011 study and to determine spatial patterns and temporal trends in diet composition. We hypothesize that a) consumption of round goby will have increased for native predators, b) consumption of bloaters will have increased for all predator species, c) Chinook salmon will continue to be dependent on alewife, and d) diets will be heterogeneous across space and time. This data will give managers a more thorough understanding of predator-prey interactions in Lake Huron, and will be used to update models used by managers to evaluate the sustainability of current predator levels and stocking strategies.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Lights out Cleveland: Methodology and Collision Patterns
AUTHORS: Andrew W. Jones, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Tim Jasinski, Lake Erie Nature & Science Center; Courtney L. Brennan, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Sylvie F. Crowell, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Gary Fowler, Lake Erie Nature & Science Center; Laura Gooch, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Moira Meehan, Ohio Wesleyan University; Stephanie Secic, Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: In 2017, we initiated a collaboration among six organizations to monitor bird-building collisions in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Field monitoring is carried out entirely by volunteers, starting at dawn on every day in spring and fall migration. Social media has been a key tool to recruit new volunteers as well as to coordinate daily monitoring schedules. During daily surveys, injured birds are placed in paper bags and then transported to Lake Erie Nature & Science Center for rehabilitation. Most injuries are related to cranial swelling. We report several approaches that have been successful in rehabilitating species that do not typically recover well in captivity, including American Woodcock. Birds are then banded before release. Birds that are found dead, or die during rehabilitation, are frozen and later prepared as museum research specimens at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. In Fall 2017, over 1,800 collisions were detected in downtown Cleveland. Over 1,200 of these collisions were fatal. We reviewed collision data, comparing collision sites to the adjacent landscape, finding that building facades that face large green spaces are responsible for significantly larger numbers of collisions. We compared collision rates, per species, to local abundances from citizen science efforts, finding that collision rates are not proportional to abundance.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Early Successional Habitats in Riparian Zones
AUTHORS: Brent A. Rudolph, Ruffed Grouse Society and American Woodcock Society

ABSTRACT: Optimal trout habitat consists of clear water with low silt and fine sediments, high dissolved oxygen, and cold, relatively stable temperatures, and well-vegetated, stable stream banks. Though sunlight can enhance stream productivity, small trout streams in particular are considered optimal at 50% to 75% midday shade. To maintain these conditions, fisheries and forestry managers often apply stream buffers within which many or all silvicultural treatments are restricted or entirely prohibited. These buffers may be universally applied regardless of stream geomorphology or potential trout production, and justified as necessary safeguards of any potential enhancement of fish production. This static application of constraints on forest management, however, may exacerbate the already considerable concern regarding recent declines of early successional habitat and associated disturbance-dependent wildlife species in the eastern United States. Some habitat types highly preferred by ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) and American woodcock (Scolopax minor) are highly ephemeral, and providing a sufficient amount, size, and distribution of habitat patches depends upon well-planned and sustainable rotational cutting to provide the necessary disturbance. In this presentation, I will describe the increasing obstacles forestry and wildlife managers face when attempting to apply the even-aged management most effective at producing grouse and woodcock habitat on both private and public land, and demonstrate why riparian habitats in particular are important for grouse and especially woodcock. I will then review the variable management policies regarding application of stream buffers by land management agencies in the upper Midwest/Great Lakes region, and demonstrate how different riparian buffers intersect with key forest types and restrict opportunities to create habitat. I will encourage managers to ensure that buffers are evaluated or at least objectively planned and implemented to consider such management implications in addition to promoting high quality fisheries.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:20pm

(FISHERIES: RIVERS & STREAMS) Recovery of Riverine Fish Assemblages After Anthropogenic Disturbances
AUTHORS: Jessica M. Rohr, Eastern Illinois University; Scott J. Meiners, Eastern Illinois University; Trent Thomas, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; Robert E. Colombo, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Disturbances among communities are common, but the response of fish assemblages to anthropogenic fish kills is rarely investigated. To determine how rapidly, or if recovery occurs without further mitigation, complete quantification of the fish recovery process is necessitated. We evaluated the recovery of six creeks located in central Illinois, including an undisturbed control system. Pre-kill data was available for all locations, and post-kill data was available within two to six months following the perturbation. Data analysis included pre- and post-kill comparisons of species richness, catch per unit effort (CPUE), and index of biotic integrity (IBI) and non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMS) to visually compare compositional shifts. We found that richness and IBI experienced dramatic shifts within the first year after the kill, while CPUE remained relatively consistent among sampling events. Interestingly, extinction was not limited to only rare species. There were also multiple colonizations of new species that were not present prior to the perturbation. NMS revealed that some creeks experienced little compositional shift similar to that of the control system while other creeks are still experiencing large shifts. Lastly, the rate of compositional change decreased significantly over time among all locations, especially within the first year. Richness and IBI have clearly recovered from the disturbance and continue to exceed the original pre-kill values; however, assemblages in some locations have shifted into a different community structure and are continuing to change. Our results make recovery among these systems difficult to assess calling into question the predictability of the system’s response. Further functional analysis of these systems, including fish length distribution, may help to alleviate some of these discrepancies.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:20pm

(WILDLIFE: WATERFOWL) Spring Food Habits of Green-winged Teal in Illinois
AUTHORS: Samuel T. Klimas, Western Illinois University; Joshua M. Osborn, Auburn University; Heath M. Hagy, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Christopher N. Jacques, Western Illinois University; Joseph D. Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey; Sean E. Jenkins, Western Illinois University; and Aaron P. Yetter, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: The Illinois River Valley (IRV) provides critical stopover habitat for migrating waterfowl during spring and autumn. Because spring migration is an important time for waterfowl as they enhance body condition in preparation for the breeding grounds, the UMRGLR Joint Venture relies on the IRV and other migratory focal areas in Illinois to protect, maintain, enhance, and restore more than 80,000 ha of wetland habitats for waterfowl. Green-winged teal (GWTE; Anas crecca) usually rank in the top 4 species in the Illinois duck harvest, and primarily consume natural foods during migration, often selecting for seeds and invertebrates over agricultural grains. In order to provide current information on wetland habitat needs for GWTE to wetland and natural resource managers, we experimentally collected foraging GWTE during the spring in the IRV from the confluence of the Illinois and Mississippi rivers extending north to Hennepin, Illinois, during springs 2016–2018. We removed upper digestive tracts and estimated food availability (benthic and nektonic samples) at foraging sites to evaluate food use and 4<sup>th</sup> order selection. We analyzed diets from the upper gastrointestinal (GI) tract (proventriculus and esophagus), as well as gizzards. Further, we performed proximate analysis on the teal carcasses to analyze body condition in relation to diet. We will discuss overall food use and selection by GWTE, as well as preferences of plant and invertebrate taxa in comparison with food availability.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:20pm

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: WILDLIFE) University Students and Bears: Understanding Attitudes Among Future Stakeholders
AUTHORS: Haley Netherton, Mike Rader, Shawn Crimmins, Brenda Lackey, Cady Sartini – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: Increasing global bear populations and human-bear conflicts have made it more imperative to understand public attitudes towards bears and management interventions. Management methods vary in effectiveness and public support, further complicating the management of bears and other large carnivores. Without proper understanding of public attitudes towards bears and specific management actions, conflict can ensue between stakeholders and managers. To address this need, we conducted a survey of undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP), as they will become the next stakeholders and policymakers. The objective of our study was to evaluate university student attitudes towards bears and their management and determine the associated factors, including personal experience with bears, socio-cultural influences, and stakeholder group membership. UWSP students tend to favor education and relocation as management tools, with education creating the least conflict. Destruction of the bear is more favorable as conflict escalates, but remains fairly controversial. Our results suggest that college of study and personal experience may be correlated with attitudes towards management interventions. Significant differences in students grouped by attitude towards bears were found for multiple management actions across several encounter situations. Students in the positive attitude group significantly differed from students in the mixed/negative attitude group in their responses towards monitoring the situation, providing education for locals, and destruction of the bear in all five contexts of increasing conflict in a neighborhood setting (all p < 0.001). The effect sizes for these differences suggest minimal to substantial relationships between respondents’ general attitude towards bears and their attitude towards a management action in a specific encounter context (d = 0.304-0.894). The results of this study will contribute to the greater body of literature that can be used to inform the best management options for bears and other large carnivores in a particular socio-demographic context. 

Monday January 28, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Evaluating a Statewide Yellow Perch Regulation for Michigan
AUTHORS: David Clapp, MDNR, Charlevoix; Andrew Briggs, MDNR, Lake St. Clair; Randall Claramunt, MDNR, Lake Huron; David Fielder, MDNR, Alpena; Troy Zorn, MDNR, Marquette

ABSTRACT: Michigan DNR recently evaluated a revised statewide bag limit for yellow perch using creel survey data, fisheries independent assessments,  and social survey data. We will present an overview of this evaluation, highlighting the advantages and limitations of each of these data sources. This review resulted in a recommendation for regulation change in Michigan, but also resulted in development of a template that can be used in future regulation evaluations for species other than yellow perch. 

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Translocating Eastern Massasaugas: Approaches and Limitations
AUTHORS: Bruce Kingsbury, Purdue University Fort Wayne; Jillian Josimovich, US Geological Survey; Monica Matthews, Purdue University Fort Wayne; Sasha Tetzlaff, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Brett DeGregorio, US Army Corps of Engineers

ABSTRACT: Wildlife translocation involves moving animals to augment depleted populations or to repatriate extirpated ones, or to move “nuisance” animals from places where they might cause harm or be in harm’s way when non-conservation activities threaten them. Many translocations are occurring ahead of our understanding of best practices, and are often unsuccessful as evidenced by increased mortality or departures from a targeted destination. We have been studying the translocation of Eastern Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus), a small, federally threatened rattlesnake, at a site in Michigan near the northern extent of the species’ range. As part of this ongoing research, we have also been exploring the utility of “soft-release”, which involves temporarily keeping some individuals in an outdoor enclosure at the release site in the hopes that they will acclimate to the new environment more readily than those immediately “hard-released”. To date, we have radio-tracked over 50 translocated and resident (control) massasaugas to investigate their habitat use, spatial ecology and behavior. We report on our findings. Notably, among male massasaugas (the group we had the largest sample for at time of writing), residents had a survival rate of 0.72 (+ SE = 0.21), while hard-released snakes had a reduced annual survivorship of 0.40 (+ 0.20) and soft-released 0.44 (+ 0.18). Evaluations of females are forthcoming. These preliminary outcomes indicate that translocated snakes may experience higher mortalities, and that soft-release does not appear to improve that outcome. Given the increased rates of mortality for individuals moved into unfamiliar territory, nuisance animals should be moved the shortest distances possible, and ideally within their home ranges. Massasaugas translocated out of their home ranges will likely experience higher mortality than residents, and translocation efforts should incorporate that result during planning.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Reevaluation of Wild Juvenile Lake Trout Spatial Distribution and Diets in Lake Huron (2008 - 2017)
AUTHORS: Taaja R. Tucker, University of Toledo; Edward F. Roseman, Stephen C. Riley, Timothy P. O’Brien, Darryl W. Hondorp, Dustin A. Bowser, Scott A. Jackson – US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Rehabilitation efforts of lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush) in Lake Huron have resulted in increased recruitment and capture of young wild lake trout in annual bottom trawl surveys conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey. To better understand the spatial distribution and food habits of wild juvenile lake trout, we performed diet analyses on 311 of 343 fish captured in bottom trawls at six ports in Lake Huron during October/November 2008–2017. Lake trout ranged in size from 27 to 371 mm, representing approximately three age classes. Most of the fish (83%) were captured at 46–64 m depths at the two northernmost ports, typically below the thermocline. Mysis diluviana was the most prevalent diet item, found in 222 of 299 fish with non-empty stomachs (74%), followed by Bythotrephes longimanus (31%), and round goby (Neogobius melanostomus; 11%). Young-of-year lake trout (Mysis and Daphnia, while larger lake trout converted to mostly fish-based diets at age 2+. Compared to a previous diet analysis of young Lake Huron lake trout from 2004–2006, fish in the current study consumed more unique prey items (12 vs. 6) and fish species, although many of the lake trout in the current study were larger than those analyzed in the past (74–120 mm). While the variety of taxa consumed by young lake trout has increased since the last study period, the most commonly observed prey items after Mysis were nonnative taxa. Mysis remain an important early food for lake trout in Lake Huron.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Opening the Black Box of Post Bird-window Collision Survival and Behavior with New Technology, Citizen Scientists, and Diverse Collaborations
AUTHORS: Lucas W. DeGroote, Jonathan Rice – Carnegie Museum of Natural History

ABSTRACT: It is often asserted that “half” or “many” birds that hit windows and live to fly away will later die of internal injuries.  Yet our knowledge of these injuries is limited to a small number of birds that were sacrificed to compare their injuries to birds that did not survive a window collision.  Only recently are we able to track small post-collision migrants over large distances thanks to a collaborative array of automated receiving stations (Motus Wildlife Tracking System) that are able to detect VHF transmitters operating on the same frequency (i.e. nanotags).  We utilized the Motus WTS and nanotags to study the long-term effects of bird-window collision on 29 migrant landbirds found by citizen science volunteers in Pittsburgh and Cleveland the spring of 2017.  We will compare their survival and migratory behavior to 21 birds captured via mist nets at Presque Isle Bird Observatory (NW PA) and Powdermill Avian Research Center (SW PA). In addition, we will utilize data collected by rehabilitators to quantify short term survival of birds found by citizen scientists.  With this data we will gain insight not only on the long-term effects of bird-window collisions on individuals but also population level consequences that as of yet have been unquantified through traditional citizen science based collision monitoring programs.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Science to Action: Decision-Support to Advance Stream Trout Management in a Changing Climate
AUTHORS: Andrew K. Carlson, William W. Taylor – Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, Michigan State University; Zeenatul Basher, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; T. Douglas Beard Jr., National Climate Adaptation Science Center, USGS; Dana M. Infante, Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Decision-making with limited information is commonplace in fisheries management, stemming from the need to sustain fisheries ecosystems in the face of changing environmental and human conditions. Decision support tools (DSTs) facilitate decision-making by systematically integrating environmental and socioeconomic information and accounting for variability in human and natural systems, yet they have not been widely applied in freshwater recreational fisheries management. As such, we collaborated with fisheries research and management professionals to develop a DST – specifically, a stream prioritization tool (SPT) – to inform fisheries management amid climate change in Michigan coldwater streams inhabited Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis, Brown Trout Salmo trutta, and Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss. The SPT ranked streams by synthesizing management decision-making criteria that affect trout thermal habitat quality (e.g., current and future stream temperature, relative abundance of trout, groundwater input). Productive, socioeconomically important trout streams with high thermal habitat quality such as the Au Sable and Manistee rivers were predictably the highest-ranked streams by the SPT and thus warrant continued trout population and thermal habitat management (e.g., groundwater conservation). However, certain streams currently important for recreational fishing (e.g., Muskegon River, Pere Marquette River) were projected to have relatively low thermal habitat quality by 2056, whereas other streams without top-tier fisheries (e.g., Rapid River, Davenport Creek) were predicted to have high-quality thermal habitats, suggesting they merit increased management efforts. Revealing unexpected yet management-relevant findings under different scenarios of climate change, the SPT is a flexible instrument to help sustain thermally resilient trout populations and streamline fisheries management decision-making amid climate change.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:40pm

(FISHERIES: RIVERS & STREAMS) The Temporal Effects of Heavy Metal Contamination on the Fish Community of the West Fork White River, Muncie, IN
AUTHORS: Drew Holloway, Muncie Sanitary District Bureau of Water Quality; Jason Doll, University of Mt. Olive; Robert Shields, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

ABSTRACT: The importance of monitoring anthropogenic changes in a lotic system are not limited to chemical water quality monitoring. The addition of biological monitoring allows fish to be used as bioindicators because of their varying tolerance to pollution. For this study we utilized long-term water quality and fish data to evaluate temporal changes brought on by passage of the Clean Water Act (1972). Non-metric Multidimensional Scaling (NMS) was used to describe changes in the fish community and also heavy metal concentrations of the West Fork White River inMuncie, Indiana over the past 33 years. The NMS results for both heavy metals and fish separated into distinct decadal clusters. The shift in fish community data was characterized by a drop in pollution tolerant species and an increase in intolerant species. A decrease in heavy metal concentrations (chromium, zinc, and lead) was also found during this time period. All NMS fish axis had a positive slope indicating an increase in intolerant species as heavy metal concentrations decreased. Our findings indicate that the water quality improvements documented in the West Fork White River have directly impacted its local fish community. 

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:40pm

(WILDLIFE: WATERFOWL) Stepping down a Regional Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation Decision Support Tool
AUTHORS: Matthew D. Palumbo, Jacob N. Straub – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: The goals of the 2012 North American Waterfowl Management Plan target a combination of biological and social objectives that are prioritized regionally through Joint Venture (JV) partnerships. The Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes (UMRGLR) JV developed a decision support tool (DST) to assist in implementing these objectives. The DST is based on six spatially explicit model-based maps, each representing a biological or social objective weighted by input from regional decision makers. The DST depicts areas of relative value to meet the combined six objectives and therefore identifies areas for regional managers to target conservation for waterfowl and people. In 1992 Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources developed their own state-based conservation plan to achieve waterfowl population and habitat objectives.  This ‘WI Plan’ was based on a spatial hierarchy of priority regions, areas, and townships that were delineated from estimated waterfowl densities and habitat, geo-political boundaries, and expert opinion. Since 1992 managers have been working to implement conservation practices based on this system. However much has changed since this time thus, our objective was to revise the 92 WI Plan and provide an updated spatially-explicit tool to drive waterfowl habitat conservation efforts in the upcoming decades. Using the framework of UMRGLR JV, we developed six updated model-based maps representing waterfowl and human objectives specific to Wisconsin.  These maps have allowed WI conservation managers to visualize how conservation practices would be prioritized under various ranks of biological and social values. The WI DST will assist state managers with redistributing priority regions based on eco-physiographic boundaries and quantitative ranking based on the underlying biological and social data of the tool. The DST of UMRGL JV and WI demonstrate the value of incorporating spatio-temporal variation of biological and social data for conservation managers to prioritize practices.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:40pm

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: WILDLIFE) Tolerance of Restored Wildlife: Landowner Attitudes Toward Elk in Northwest Minnesota
AUTHORS: Eric Walberg, Minnesota Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit, University of Minnesota; Gino D'Angelo, Warnell School of Forestry & Natural Resources, University of Georgia; David C. Fulton, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit; Lou Cornicelli, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Reintroduction is an important tool used to restore elk (Cervus elaphus) populations to their native ranges in North America, though private landowners may be negatively impacted due to damage to private property (e.g., agricultural crops, fences). Restoration of elk populations in northwest Minnesota began in the 1920’s, yet elk numbers have remained low and the species is currently managed at low levels to reduce human-wildlife conflicts. The long-term viability of elk populations in Minnesota depends on landowner tolerance and public support for elk. Past studies have found that most individuals affected by elk normally do not participate in actions that impact the elk population, though as human-elk interactions increase individuals’ start undertaking actions either negatively or positively impacting the elk population. Actions that negatively impact wildlife indicate intolerance of a species and actions that positively impact a species indicate stewardship. We conducted a census of landowners within elk range in northwest Minnesota (N = 768) using a mail-based questionnaire to assess landowner attitudes toward elk and elk management in northwest Minnesota. Our theoretical framework posits that tolerance can be represented using three concepts: (1) Wildlife Acceptance Capacity (WAC); (2) attitudes toward elk; and (3) trust in the responsible management agency. Our research objectives were to understand tolerance of elk in northwest Minnesota among landowners and determine the effectiveness of our model at measuring tolerance of elk populations. The analysis supported two conclusions: (1) a majority of landowners have neutral tolerance attitudes toward elk (55%), and (2) landowner attitudes toward elk and WAC are effective measures of landowner tolerance of the elk population in northwest Minnesota.

Monday January 28, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:00pm

Refreshment Break with Exhibitors
Monday January 28, 2019 3:00pm - 3:20pm
TBD

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Criteria for Removing a Protected Slot Limit on Smallmouth Bass Using Standardized Fisheries Survey Data
AUTHORS: Mark J. Fincel, South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks

ABSTRACT: In an effort to improve size structure of Smallmouth Bass Micropterus dolomieu in Lake Sharpe, a large Missouri River impoundment, the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks instituted two protected slot limits: restricted (305-457 mm) beginning in 2003 and relaxed (355-457 mm) beginning in 2008. We examined the effects of these regulations on Smallmouth Bass harvest and population characteristics and compared creel and population trends of Lake Sharpe Smallmouth Bass to adjacent reservoirs where Smallmouth Bass harvest was not regulated. Prior to the slot limit, the majority of the Smallmouth Bass harvest on Lake Sharpe was from 250-400 mm (PP355 mm, and angler catch of trophy Smallmouth Bass was observed, suggesting an effective regulation. However, a before-after-control-impact (BACI) study design and analysis indicated the slot limit regulation was not likely contributing to the observed increases in Smallmouth Bass size structure. Indeed, similar changes in size structure were observed in abutting Lakes Oahe and Francis Case, suggesting a Missouri River system-wide affect was responsible for observed population changes. Subsequently, the protective slot limit regulation was removed from Lake Sharpe in 2012.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Case Study: Using a Drone Mounted Thermal Camera to Detect Eastern Massasaugas at Jennings Environmental Education Center, Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania
AUTHORS: Christine Proctor, Albert Sarvis – Harrisburg University of Science and Technology

ABSTRACT: Once a widespread and common snake, the eastern massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus catenatus) is protected in every state where it currently occurs and is listed as threatened under the US Endangered Species Act. The use of drones to count wildlife is increasing, however they are primarily used to quantify conspicuous endothermic species. This ongoing study is exploring the potential of drone mounted thermal imaging to increase detection of this cryptic reptile. We hypothesized that thermal imaging captured via a remotely controlled drone will increase our ability to accurately quantify eastern massasauga populations, as compared to more traditional methods. A thermal sensor mounted to a drone was manually flown over a 20-acre managed prairie with a confirmed population of eastern massasaugas in a systematic pattern at an elevation of 10 meters, providing a ground resolution of 1.85 centimeters. Two controllers were used, allowing one person to focus on flying the drone while the other closely monitored the imagery. A third person was directed to the location of a suspected snake for visual confirmation. Once visual confirmation was made, we collected temperature data for both the snake and the ambient environment using a laser thermometer. This allowed for an increased understanding of the minimal temperature difference between the snake and ground required for detection, helping to set target temperature ranges and improve overall detection. During this process we also collected data on thermal signatures of non-snake items such as small mammals, branches, ant hills, and water, helping to train observers on how to interpret the imagery at a higher accuracy. The results from this study have the potential to improve the accuracy of data collection, influencing the future of cryptic reptile detection.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Diet Complexity of Lake Michigan Salmonids
AUTHORS: Benjamin Leonhardt, Purdue University; Benjamin Turschak, Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Austin Happel, Colorado State University; Sergiusz Czesny, University of Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey; Harvey Boostma, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Jacques Rinchard, SUNY-Brockport; Matt Kornis, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Charles Bronte, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Tomas Höök, Purdue University, Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant

ABSTRACT: Documenting trophic relationships in aquatic ecosystems can facilitate understanding of not only system processes, but also the potential responses of food webs to stressors.  In Lake Michigan, the introduction of invasive species (e.g., zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha; quagga mussel, Dreissena bugensis; round goby, Neogobius melanostomus) and reduced nutrient loading has resulted in changes in nutrient dynamics and community composition over the past two decades. As a result, abundances of many forage fish have declined, including alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus) which have historically supported the five dominant salmonid species of Lake Michigan (brown trout, Salmo trutta; Chinook salmon, Oncorhynchus tshawytscha; Coho salmon, Oncorhynchus kisutch; lake trout, Salvelinus namaycush; rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss). With these ecosystem changes, there is uncertainty as to the extent of how different species of salmonids will transition to alternative prey items (e.g., round goby). We investigated the diet complexity of Lake Michigan salmonids by evaluating stomach content composition, diet diversity, and lengths of alewife consumed. Stomachs collected in 2015 and 2016 in Lake Michigan revealed that Chinook salmon almost exclusively consumed alewife and had a lower diet diversity compared to the other four species, which consumed round goby (brown trout and lake trout), aquatic invertebrates (Coho salmon), and terrestrial invertebrates (rainbow trout) in addition to alewife. Additionally, salmonid species appeared to consume the entire size range of alewife that were available to them despite year to year changes in alewife length availability. Due to their reliance on alewife, it is likely that Chinook salmon may be more negatively impacted than other salmonid species if patterns of alewife decline continue in Lake Michigan.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Forty Years of Bird-building Collisions Shed Light on the Evolutionary Dynamics of Bird Migration in a Rapidly Changing World
AUTHORS: Benjamin Winger, University of Michigan; Brian Weeks, University of Michigan; David Willard, The Field Museum

ABSTRACT: Global warming is hypothesized to cause reductions in animal body size. Migratory birds are particularly vulnerable to change because they breed at high latitudes where temperatures are changing most rapidly, their morphologies are constrained by the demands of migration, and they are dependent on fluctuating seasonal resources and climatic conditions throughout their annual cycles. We analyzed morphological change for 52 species of migratory birds from 1978-2016, using measurements of 70,000 specimens that died from building collisions during migratory passage through Chicago, IL. Across species, we found a consistent decline in body size and consistent increase in wing length. Body size declines are linked to increasing summer temperatures on the breeding grounds: years with high summer temperature yielded birds with smaller body size. Increases in wing length are driven by selection during the migratory period, which we hypothesize is due to compensatory selection for efficient flight to maintain migratory journeys in the face of shrinking body size. The species composition of the Chicago collision data we analyzed also yielded insights into the relevance of avian social behavior for understanding the negative impacts of artificial light on birds during nocturnal migration.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) River Restoration in Iowa ... Is There Anything Fishy Going on Here?
AUTHORS: Jeff Kopaska, Iowa Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Historical accounts of Iowa’s aquatic resources paint a picture of what Iowa’s rivers, streams and lakes were like at the time of settlement. Unfortunately, the physical and biological components of these aquatic systems had already been degraded by the time of the first scientific surveys in the late 1800s. Erosion and sedimentation issues that began in the 1800s still plague Iowa’s rivers and streams today, in the form of streamside alluvial deposits that are phosphorus laden and subject to streambank erosion. Iowa currently is undertaking efforts to reduce nutrient flux out of the state via our streams and rivers, but restoration of other components of stream ecosystems such as hydrology, geomorphology and biology is lacking. Including nutrient reduction/stream restoration practices that enhance fish populations and fish habitat can provide short term and long term measureable improvements to Iowa’s aquatic resources, as well as those downstream.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

3:20pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 1) Community Shifts in the Middle Mississippi River Relative to the Introduction of Two Hypophthalmichthys Carps
AUTHORS: Christopher Schwinghamer, Quinton Phelps, Kyle Hartman – West Virginia University

ABSTRACT: Aquatic invasive species can have broad impacts on aquatic ecosystems. Through direct and indirect competition, alteration of existing habitats, and increased predation pressure, non-native species can alter the composition of native fish communities. Two non-native carps from the genus Hypophthalmichthys, Silver H. molitrix and Bighead H. nobilis carps, were introduced into the Mississippi River Basin in the 1970’s through escape from aquaculture facilities and have established populations throughout much of the basin. Due to their planktivorous diets, these non-native invaders possess a high likelihood for competition with native fishes. This creates the potential for shifts in community composition in reaches where they are present. One such reach, in which Silver and Bighead carp established in 2004, is the Middle Mississippi River. Principal response curve analyses of the fish community data was performed to evaluate shift in community composition over time using long term monitoring data. Introductions of these carps appears to have altered native fish communities. Results suggest dramatic declines in abundance of Gizzard Shad Dorosoma cepedianum, while populations of benthic omnivores such as catfish and suckers and abundant prey species may be slightly increasing post-carp establishment. Gizzard Shad, a highly abundant prey species, represent the most abundant native planktivore who likely share the largest dietary overlap and thus highest intensity of competition with the carps. While some species may be experiencing increased abundances, the magnitude of their increase in far exceeded by the declines in Gizzard Shad populations. As such, proper management of invasive carp populations is vital to maintaining healthy fish communities in the Middle Mississippi River.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

3:20pm

(FISHERIES: FISH CONSERVATION) Distributions Across an Island: Using SDMs to Conserve an Imperiled Sucker
AUTHORS: Seth J. Fopma, South Dakota State University; Brian D.S. Graeb, South Dakota State University; Tammy Wilson, National Park Service

ABSTRACT: Described as an “island on the prairie” the Black Hills are a small range of mountains arising from a sea of short and mid-grass prairies. Upwelling from the center of the hills, flowing outward are numerous, cold-water streams lacking connectivity to regional cold-water networks. Many species that inhabit local streams are subsequently isolated from conspecific populations, posing unique management challenges. Climate change, predicted to alter local climatic patterns (intensified wet and dry cycles, general warming), potentially further limits species distributions within the island. Mountain Sucker (Catostomus platyrhynchus) is listed as a management indicator species for the Black Hills of South Dakota by South Dakota’s department of Game Fish and Parks, and is used as a proxy for regional ecosystem health. Surveys conducted between 2008 and 2010 revealed that populations had been in decline in both distribution and local abundance. Population surveys conducted between 2014 and 2017 were used to generate species distribution models (SDMs) for this regionally imperiled species. Model predictions are expected to be driven by stream permanency and connectivity. Predictions were compared to 2018 empirical observations to assess model accuracy. Accurate models allow managers to more efficiently identify local populations, impacts of climate change and target conservation efforts.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:20pm

(WILDLIFE: CERVIDS) Causes of Mortality in Minnesota’s Declining Moose Population
AUTHORS: Michelle Carstensen, Erik C. Hildebrand, Dawn Plattner, Margaret Dexter – Minnesota Department of Natural Resources; Arno Wünschmann, Anibal Armien – University of Minnesota-Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

ABSTRACT: Minnesota’s moose (Alces alces) are dying at rates much higher than elsewhere in North America. Moose have been nearly extirpated from the northwestern part of the state and aerial surveys indicate the northeastern population has declined 55% over the past decade. In 2013, a new study began to determine cause-specific mortality of adult moose in northeastern Minnesota by using GPS-satellite collars to get rapid notification of mortality events and recover carcasses within 24 hours of death. A total of 173 moose were collared over 3 years with annual non-hunting mortality rates of 19%, 12%, 15%, 13% and 14% in 2013-2017, respectively, and an overall mean of 14.4%. In total, 57 moose have died from non-hunting sources of mortality and 3 moose were legally harvested. Response times from mortality notification to arrival at the carcass were within 24 hours for 65% of death events. Most causes of mortality were health-related (65%), which included parasites (30%; e.g., winter ticks, brainworm, and liver flukes), bacterial infections (20%), accidents (3%), calving (2%) and other undetermined health issues (10%).The remainder was wolf-related (30%), with predisposing health conditions identified in nearly half of these moose.  Legal harvest accounted for 5% of moose deaths. During the same time period, we also necropsied anecdotal moose deaths (n=91) across northern Minnesota, which included vehicle or train collisions, sick, and found dead animals. Parelaphostrongylus tenuis was confirmed in 42% of these cases, which is nearly twice the rate of detection of this parasite as in the collared moose studied during the same time period. 

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

3:20pm

(FISHERIES: HABITAT) Hypoxia Alters Spatial Overlap of Primary and Secondary Consumers in the Pelagic Food Web of Reservoirs
AUTHORS: Rebecca A. Dillon, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University; Joseph D. Conroy, Inland Fisheries Research Unit, Division of Wildlife, Ohio Department of Natural Resources; Stuart A. Ludsin, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Hypolimnetic hypoxia has been shown to affect individual behavior, food web structure and interactions, and ecosystem function in aquatic ecosystems worldwide. While recent research has explored the impact of hypolimnetic hypoxia on coastal marine and large-lake food webs, less is known about the effects of hypoxia on reservoir food webs, especially pelagic ones. To address this gap, we examined how the spatial distribution of primary consumers (zooplankton) and secondary consumers (i.e., zooplanktivorous fish, clupeids; vertically migrating, hypoxia-tolerant, macroinvertebrates, Chaoborus spp.) varied between periods of normoxia (spring) and hypoxia (summer) in two small (surface area = 13.5, 11.7 km<sup>2</sup>), shallow (average depth = 6.6, 5.7 m) Ohio reservoirs. We tested the hypothesis that hypolimnetic hypoxia increases spatial overlap among zooplanktivorous fish, macroinvertebrates, and their potential zooplankton at night, whereas it reduces their overlap during the day because hypoxia-tolerant macroinvertebrates can use the hypoxic hypolimnion (and their zooplanktivorous fish predators cannot). We used net tows and hydroacoustics to describe the distribution and spatial overlap of zooplankton, Chaoborus, and zooplanktivorous fish during both day and night, and simultaneously measured physiochemical attributes (e.g., temperature, dissolved oxygen concentration, light levels). We found partial support for our hypothesis, as the overlap (determined from visual examination of net tow and hydroacoustics data) between fish and zooplankton was always high during periods with hypoxia, and was only high at night during normoxia. The overlap between Chaoborus and zooplankton was higher at night than during the day during periods of both normoxia and hypoxia, as Chaoborus were found at all depths during the day. Fish, Chaoborus, and zooplankton had the greatest spatial overlap at night during hypoxic periods. Our findings highlight the potential for hypoxia to alter pelagic food-web interactions in reservoir ecosystems.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Opening Lake Erie's Spring Bass Season: Standard Assessments Inform Increased Opportunities for Anglers
AUTHORS: Zak J. Slagle, Travis Hartman – Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: Ohio anglers have historically fished heavily for black bass, leading to record levels of angler effort and harvest in the late 1990’s. Additionally, missing year classes of bass, invasion of non-native nest predators (Round Goby), and resurgence in possible avian predators (Double-crested Cormorant) were all seen as threats to the bass population through the early 2000’s. Ohio Division of Wildlife also lacked yearly surveys of black basses, complicating fishery management decisions. ODW responded by increasing restrictions on bag limits and minimum sizes for black bass harvest; the 14 inch, 5 fish bag limit that currently stands was created in 2000. A seasonal catch-and-release only regulation was added in 2004 to further reduce harvest after the 2000 regulations failed to sufficiently improve size structure. Since then, the increase of catch-and-release ethics have dramatically reduced harvest during the open season, and ODW has added yearly surveys that allow fisheries managers to better evaluate population trends. Ohio’s Lake Erie black bass populations are unlikely to be negatively impacted by newly introduced relaxed regulations (i.e., changing the seasonal closure to a one fish possession, 18 inch minimum size limit). Black bass harvest during the spawning season is unlikely to increase substantially with these regulation changes. However, current levels of bass fishing effort are near historical lows, and liberalization of regulations will allow additional fishing opportunities. The new regulations should expand angler opportunities and allow anglers to keep and weigh in a potential state record fish while conserving the bass population for generations to come.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Overview of a New Initiative That Engages Private Landowners in Eastern Massasauga Conservation in Ontario
AUTHORS: Crystal Robertson, Andrew Lentini, Rick Vos – Toronto Zoo

ABSTRACT: Much of the habitat for Eastern massasauga rattlesnakes in Ontario is held under private ownership. While the value of engaging private landowners in massasauga conservation has long been recognized, many general education efforts have limited on-the-ground impact. The Toronto Zoo has been involved with massasauga conservation since the 1980s through assurance population management and the development of various outreach resources. The type of messages shared with the public has evolved over time and increasingly requests are fielded about roles played by individual landowners in conserving massasaugas. Over the past four years, Toronto Zoo redeveloped our education materials and landowner engagement offerings to better meet these needs. We now design personalized habitat management guidelines for landowners to enhance their stewardship role. This initiative involves reaching out to landowners through our network of partners and arranging for Zoo staff to gather information on resident snakes during site visits to private properties. The habitat management guidelines offer information on areas of seasonal massasauga activity allowing landowners to plan activities, such as selective tree harvesting, at times that minimize impacts on resident snakes. The guidelines also identify potential habitat enhancement or restoration activities that landowners can undertake with Zoo support. An updated suite of outreach products has been developed to support this initiative and allow participating landowners to spread the word about massasauga conservation. We also utilize visual storytelling in a new video with messaging about massasauga status in Ontario, relevant stewardship actions and local projects being undertaken to support its recovery.  With its accompanying resources, the program now engages the public in safe and relevant actions that reinforce their role in species conservation while developing a new generation of advocates for coexisting with Ontario’s only venomous snake.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Diet and Niche Overlap of Lake Michigan Piscivorous Fishes as Revealed by Stable Isotopes
AUTHORS: Ben Turschak, Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Harvey Bootma, UW-Milwaukee; Chuck Bronte, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Sergiusz Czesny, University of Illinois; Tomas Hook, Purdue; Matt Kornis, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Ben Leonhardt, Purdue; Jacques Rinchard, SUNY-Brockport

ABSTRACT: In the past several decades, the Lake Michigan ecosystem has experienced significant changes at all levels of the food web including major declines in pelagic forage fish biomass. To some degree, loss of pelagic forage has been offset by the invasion of the benthic Round Goby. Several piscivorous species including Lake Trout, Brown Trout, and Burbot have taken advantage of this novel prey source while others such as Chinook and Coho Salmon continue to rely on Alewives and other pelagic forage.  We explored the trophic structure, diet, and potential for niche overlap of Lake Michigan piscivores from 2014-2016 using stable C and N isotopes. To estimate diet proportions among species, Bayesian mixing models were used. Region and year were used as fixed effects with total length as a continuous covariate. Isotopic niche overlap was assessed by fitting Bayesian ellipses to the data and measuring overlap among species. Regional and interannual variability in trophic structure and diet with corresponding changes in niche overlap were observed. Greatest niche overlap corresponded with dependence on Alewife whereas predators that took advantage of other prey sources including Round Goby, and terrestrial invertebrates exhibited lower probability of niche overlap. Degree of overlap also appeared to decrease corresponding to availability of alternative prey sources or reduced alewife abundance.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) “Big Data” Approach to Understanding Wildlife Collision Risk at Wind Farms
AUTHORS: Ryan Butryn, Taber Allison – American Wind Wildlife Institute

ABSTRACT: The American Wind Wildlife Institute (AWWI) has developed a database of post-construction fatality monitoring data containing hundreds of studies, many of which have been unavailable for analysis.  We present the results from our first analysis of more than 200 studies at 140 projects from across the U.S.  The size of our data set enables us to evaluate fatality rates and incident data on a biologically relevant regional scale (e.g., avian migration flyways, bird conservation regions). Bird and bat fatalities have been observed at almost all wind facilities; however, the species composition and number of fatalities varies greatly among these facilities. Our results show substantial differences in regional variation in bird and bat fatality estimates indicating different underlying patterns affecting collision risk in these two groups.  We also found bird and bat species assemblages detected by post construction surveys also varied substantially by region.  We will provide examples of how increased data availability provided by AWWI can help reduce uncertainties in risk and impact assessment and inform focused and effective fatality reduction measures.  

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) How Do Beavers Affect Trout Populations? Well, it depends…
AUTHORS: Troy Zorn, Michigan Department of Natural Resources Fisheries Division

ABSTRACT: Most published studies do not provide a complete understanding of the effects of beavers on trout populations and streams.  Results often vary by location, with some studies characterizing beavers as beneficial to trout populations and others indicating beavers are harmful.  Drawing on case studies throughout the Midwest and North America, I will attempt to explain what underlies these seemingly contradictory findings.  For example, groundwater availability and inputs drive many Midwestern trout streams, and a thorough understanding of these processes is critical for understanding how beaver dams will affect trout populations.  Understanding the factors that shape trout streams in other regions will provide the context needed for interpreting an array of studies examining beaver-trout relationships and will enable managers to better predict how beavers might affect trout streams in their region.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

3:40pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 1) Intensive Harvest of Bigheaded Carps Using the Unified Method in a Floodplain Lake in Missouri, USA
AUTHORS: Jeffrey C. Jolley, Duane C. Chapman, Katelyn M. Lawson – US Geological Survey; Wyatt J. Doyle, US Fish and Wildlife Service; Kevin J. Meneau, Missouri Department of Conservation

ABSTRACT: Intensive and efficient harvest methods for invasive Asian carp in the Mississippi River Basin may alleviate negative effects of overabundance and are desired by fisheries managers.  Commercial desirability of these fish may provide economic benefits, as well.  We conducted a mass harvest at Creve Coeur Lake, Missouri using the Unified Method which was developed by Chinese fishers for harvesting carp from floodplain production lakes.  The method consists of using a variety of driving, herding, and netting techniques, in unison, to concentrate large numbers of fish from large waterbodies to a defined collection location.  We used a combination of boat electrofishing, electrified trawling, and boat-mounted acoustic deterrents to drive fish from a series of block-netted cells in the lake to concentrate fish.  Driving methods were extremely successful and 80% of the lake was mostly cleared of fish in seven days of work.  Fish behavior eventually changed when high concentrations were created and driving methods had greatly reduced effectiveness.  Fish were not successfully driven into an Iruka-style stownet likely due to a combination of water depth, physical location, and mouth opening size.  We used beach seining techniques using block nets to capture large schools of fish that had formed.  Four seine hauls resulted in 108 metric tons of Asian carp removed from the lake.  Preliminary estimates suggest that at least 50% of the Asian carp (> 40,000 fish) were harvested from the lake.  Analyses of companion environmental DNA, hyrdoacoustics, and mark-recapture data will provide additional information on efficiency of harvest. 

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

3:40pm

(FISHERIES: FISH CONSERVATION) The Cart Before the Redhorse: Examining Summer Habitat Use of the Threatened River Redhorse (Moxostoma carinatum) to Guide Future Management
AUTHORS: Nicholas Preville, Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT: The resiliency of our aquatic ecosystems hinges on our ability to protect the native species that reside there. The River Redhorse (Moxostoma carinatum) is one such example and populations have become low enough to warrant listing by the State of Michigan. Causes of decline include overfishing, habitat alteration, and lack of knowledge of basic life-history attributes including the use of non-spawning habitat. In order to aid its recovery, we implanted 15 individuals with radio transmitters and tracked their locations over the course of a summer. Tagged River Redhorse were found to move as far as 50 km down river following spawning and establish themselves in small home ranges. Substrates in these home ranges were dominated by gravel which represented 59 percent of samples. Little preference for depth or velocity was shown among the tracked fish. However, general habitat use was dominated by runs and riffles which represented 58 and 27 percent of tracked locations respectively. Presence of mussels and snails, the River Redhorse’s preferred food source, appeared to be the best predictor for the River Redhorse’s use of an area as they were found at 79 percent of all tracked locations. The recovery of the River Redhorse will likely depend on our ability to protect these newly discovered feeding areas as well as any known spawning sites. Future management should therefore focus on the protection of native mussels and snails and should attempt to maintain connectivity between spawning and summer habitats.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:40pm

(WILDLIFE: CERVIDS) Proximity to Established Populations Explains Moose (Alces alces) Occupancy in Northern Wisconsin
AUTHORS: Lucas O. Olson, Timothy R. Van Deelen, John D. J. Clare – University of Wisconsin-Madison; Maximilian L. Allen, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Wildlife conservation and management depends on understanding patterns and changes in the populations and distributions. Moose (Alces alces) sub-populations are alternately declining and increasing in abundance across their circumpolar distribution. Within regional populations a similar variable pattern sometimes exists, such as in the upper Midwest region of the United States where sub-populations are declining in Minnesota but steady or increasing in Michigan. Although abundant before European settlement, little is known about the current state of moose in Wisconsin. We examined citizen science observations of moose collected by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources over 25 years to determine the drivers and trends of moose distribution in Wisconsin. Because opportunistically collected citizen-science data may be unreliable for abundance estimates, we used an occupancy framework to understand how variables affect county-level detection and occupancy of moose. We found that detection was driven by area of Intermix Wildland Urban Interface and road density, and occupancy was driven primarily by proximity to Minnesota and Michigan, and appears to have been stable over the previous 25 years. This study offers insight for understanding moose populations on the southern fringe of their circumpolar distribution, and a foundation for understanding the moose population in Wisconsin.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

3:40pm

(FISHERIES: HABITAT) Projected Temperature Increases Decrease Sport Fish Habitat Quality in Ohio Reservoirs
AUTHORS: Richard R. Budnik, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Inland Fisheries Research Unit; Geoffrey B. Steinhart, The Ohio State University, Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory; Joseph D. Conroy, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Inland Fisheries Research Unit; Richard D. Zweifel, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife; Stuart A. Ludsin, The Ohio State University, Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory

ABSTRACT: Increased temperatures due to climate change will likely decrease the quality and quantity of habitat available to reservoir sport fish, although the extent of the effect will likely be variable by species. We developed bioenergetics models to estimate growth rate potential (GRP), a metric of habitat quality, for Largemouth Bass, saugeye, and White Crappie during a 13-year span (2005–2016) in three Ohio reservoirs that varied in productivity (summer 2012–2014 concentrations: chlorophyll a 7–55 µg/L; total phosphorus 21–106 µg/L). We contrasted these baseline measures of habitat quality with projected future changes in GRP and high-quality habitat (HQH; GRP > 0) availability under stabilizing (RCP 4.5) and increasing (RCP 8.5) carbon emission scenarios which estimate air temperatures will increase 2.5 and 4.8 degrees C by 2099. Our simulations predicted Largemouth Bass, saugeye, and White Crappie GRP would decrease an average of 0.001 g/g/day, 0.003 g/g/day, and 0.007 g/g/day, respectively, under RCP 4.5, and 0.005 g/g/day, 0.004 g/g/day, and 0.013 g/g/day under RCP 8.5. The average reduction of HQH was greatest for saugeye (20% loss) under RCP 4.5 and for White Crappie (45% loss) under RCP 8.5. Largemouth Bass HQH was the least affected with an average reduction of < 9% under both scenarios in all reservoirs. Temperature increases in the highest productivity reservoir led to the greatest reduction in habitat quality and quantity among reservoirs. These outcomes, as shaped by temperature changes, have the potential to influence not only the performance of individual fish but also will affect population dynamics, trophic interactions, and fish community structure.

Monday January 28, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Use of Multiple Surveys and Stock Assessment Models to Evaluate Effects of Liberalized Walleye Harvest Regulations in Saginaw Bay, Lake Huron and Gauge Progress on Management Objectives
AUTHORS: David G. Fielder, Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Walleye reached recovery targets in Saginaw Bay in 2009 and a management simulation model indicated that recreational fishing mortality could be increased by as much as 50% without exceeding reference points of sustainability. Recreational harvest regulations (daily possession limit and minimum length limits) were liberalized in 2015. Monitoring and evaluation has taken the form of creel survey and a fishery independent fish community netting survey. Besides indicators from those efforts, a stock assessment model is also used to gauge mortality rates and status relevant to sustainability thresholds. While walleye harvest has increased some, recreational effort has not changed greatly and that appears to limit the magnitude of the effect. The multiple survey and modeling approach to harvest regulation monitoring is effective, but costly and requires ongoing commitment to survey work and model updating.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Inferring Landscape-scale Connectivity Between Local Populations of the Eastern Massasauga Using Genome-scale Markers
AUTHORS: Scott Martin, H. Lisle Gibbs – Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University and Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership, The Ohio State University; Greg Lipps, Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Effective management of rare species relies on knowing the spatial structuring and connectivity between populations. For example, the ability of individuals to move between populations increases the likelihood of long-term persistence of a species by promoting gene flow and buffering populations against stochastic demographic events, whereas a lack of movement leads to population isolation and an increase in genetic drift. Genetic markers, such as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), can be used to determine if individuals successfully disperse between populations with a high degree of resolution. We used genome scale genetic markers to study the population connectivity of the federally threatened Eastern Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) which exists across the US portion of its range in small isolated populations. Specifically, we generated ddRADseq data for 114 individuals from sixteen fields comprising six putative populations in NE Ohio. We then calculated pairwise genetic distances between all sites. These distances were used to optimize resistances maps based on elevation and landcover in R. The top resistance values were then added to the program ‘Circuitscape’ which uses circuit-theory based modelling to map areas critical to maintaining genetic connectivity between sites while allowing for multiple pathways between sites. Our results show how genetic data can be used to determine spatial structuring in a patchily distributed species, and to map critical corridors that maintain connectivity between sites.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Lake Trout: Not a Picky Eater. Dietary Flexibility and Perseverance
AUTHORS: Dan Traynor, Shawn Sitar – Michigan Department of Natural Resources Marquette Fisheries Research Station; Ji He, Michigan Department of Natural Resources Alpena Fisheries Research Station

ABSTRACT: Lake trout are the dominant piscivore in the upper Great Lakes and are a major focus in fisheries management.  Lake populations underwent catastrophic collapses in the middle of the 20th century but have recovered in Lake Superior due to diligent management actions.  Recently, lake trout recovery has improved in Lake Huron and there are indications that Lake Michigan may be following suit.  Although controls on fishing, sea lamprey suppression, and stocking of hatchery fish were instrumental in lake trout recovery, we pose that dietary flexibility also contributed to its success.  We analyzed the diet of a broad size range of lean and siscowet lake trout from spring and summer gill net surveys conducted in southern Lake Superior and western Lake Huron during 2005-2016.  In addition to categorizing prey items by taxa, we grouped prey items by habitat types to further describe dietary flexibility.  We found that lake trout diet compositions were diverse in both lakes Superior and Huron. Generally, the diet of leans and siscowets in Lake Superior were similar.  We observed ontogenetic diet shifts in both lean and siscowet lake trout with small fish feeding predominantly in the benthos expanding to the pelagic zone as fish grew larger.  Progress in lake trout recovery in Lake Huron coincides with collapses in alewife abundance and declines in Chinook Salmon populations.  We pose that lake trout success in rapidly changing ecosystems is partly due to its high dietary flexibility and declines in Great Lakes Chinook salmon are due to its strong reliance on pelagic prey such as alewife.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Is Mortality Data Proprietary? Accessing Bird and Bat Collision Data from Wind Projects
AUTHORS: Megan Seymour, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Bird and bat collisions at wind turbines are well documented and of concern to wildlife management agencies and the public. Data is typically collected by consultants funded by the wind project owner, and is often deemed to be proprietary even though it is collected under state or federal collection permits. This presentation will discuss the how some mortality data can be accessed, what state and federal agencies can share, and what the concerns are with making data public. When collision data is not shared, our ability to conserve birds and bats proactively is limited, however given available information we can infer certain mortality patterns and risk factors. These, along with management implications will be discussed.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

4:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Minnesota’s Stream Conservation Easements and New Perennial Vegetation Buffer Law Overlap to Improve Riparian Habitat
AUTHORS: Jennifer A. Olson, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish & Wildlife

ABSTRACT: This presentation will highlight the success of Minnesota’s stream conservation easements, a new perennial vegetation buffer law, and how the MN DNR Fisheries Section manages beaver on private land under stream easements across the state. Beaver management is targeted on high priority streams based on expected benefits and available resources. There is pressure to do both more and less beaver control depending upon location.Conservation easements are interests in real property that place certain restriction on the use of the property for conservation benefit. The easements are an agreement between the original landowner and State of Minnesota. Easements are recorded with the county government and stay with the land. Minimum requirements to hold conservation easements include completing baseline property reports, maintaining relationships with original and successive landowners, monitoring the easement on a regular basis, and enforcement of easement terms when needed.Stream conservation easements are most commonly found on trout streams in southeast and northeast Minnesota. The original landowner is compensated using a standardized formula for relinquishing certain land use rights within the stream corridor. Typical stream conservation easement terms allow public angling, the development of fish habitat, access to the stream for management activities, along with the prohibition of new buildings or structures, excavating, filling, dumping, tree cutting, etc. In some regions (southern MN), agricultural tillage setbacks are also established.Minnesota established a new perennial vegetation buffer law protecting up to 50 feet along all public waters including lakes, rivers and streams, and buffers of 16.5 feet along public ditches. The purpose is to help filter out phosphorus, nitrogen and sediment. Additional benefits exist which overlap and impact stream conservation easements. The deadline for implementation of the new buffers along all public waters was November 1, 2017. The deadline for public ditches is November 1, 2018.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

4:00pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 1) History and Issues in Controlling the Bighead and Silver Carps in the Mississippi Basin
AUTHORS: Maurice Sadowsky, President, MJSTI Corp.

ABSTRACT: The bighead and silver carps (combined bigheaded) are an alien invasive species that escaped from aquaculture around 1980.  About 35 years later an estimated 12 to 30 million fish inhabit about 6,400 miles of the Mississippi Basin.  Every year the fish expand their territory and or their bio-mass density on the margins of their habit.The paper uses literature and Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee (ACRCC) and other government reports to review the programs to control these fish.  The ACRCC funds three major efforts: barriers, education/early detection/enforcement and population control.  Each division will be reviewed.The paper will then discuss the realities of controlling the bigheaded carp.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

4:00pm

(FISHERIES: FISH CONSERVATION) Evaluating Remote Site Incubators: Implications for the Reintroduction of Arctic Grayling in Michigan
AUTHORS: Alan J. Mock, Carl R. Ruetz III – Annis Water Resources Institute, Grand Valley State University; Dan Mays, Archie Martell – Little River Band of Ottawa Indians

ABSTRACT: The Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) was extirpated from Michigan by 1936, and subsequent efforts to reintroduce the species to Michigan have failed. However, efforts to restore the species in Montana have been successful through the use of remote site incubators (RSIs), which allow Arctic grayling to be reared and stocked at the site of introduction. Due to a renewed interest in reestablishing Arctic grayling in Michigan, we conducted a study using rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) eggs as surrogates for Arctic grayling to evaluate RSIs in three tributaries of the Manistee River to support the reintroduction effort. We installed eight single-tank RSIs (single 19-L bucket) and one stock-tank RSI (265-L trough) at each study stream. Our objectives were to: 1) test whether the removal of dead eggs and alevins from single-tank RSIs affected hatching success, and 2) compare hatching success between two different RSI designs (i.e., single-tank and stock-tank RSIs). Survival—our measure of hatching success that accounted for swim-out and alevins that remained in RSIs—ranged from 40.3% to 42.4% (mean=41.4%) across the three study streams. Mean survival in picked RSIs (45.6%) was not significantly different from unpicked RSIs (44.4%; p>0.1).  Mean survival in stock-tank RSIs was 37.2%. Survival between stock-tank and single-tank RSIs by stream differed from 1.8% to 10.3% (mean=5.3%). Our preliminary results suggests that differences in hatching success may not be biologically relevant between the two RSI designs we tested, and that removing dead individuals from RSIs during incubation did not significantly increase hatching success.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

4:00pm

(WILDLIFE: CERVIDS) Evaluation of an Ek Detection Probability Model in the Black Hills, South Dakota
AUTHORS: Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University; Evan Phillips, Colorado Parks and Wildlife; Angela Jarding, National Park Service; Susan Rupp, Enviroscapes Ecological Consulting, LLC; Robert Klaver, U.S. Geological Survey; Chadwick Lehman, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks; Jonathan Jenks, South Dakota State University

ABSTRACT: Since 1993, elk (Cervus canadensis nelsoni) abundance in the Black Hills of South Dakota has been estimated using a detection probability model previously developed in Idaho, though are likely negatively biased because of a failure to account for visibility biases under local conditions. To correct for this bias, we evaluated the current detection probability across the Black Hills during January and February 2009-2011 using radiocollared elk. We used logistic regression to evaluate topographic features, habitat characteristics, and group characteristics relative to their influence on detectability of elk. Elk detection probability increased with less vegetation cover (%), increased group size, and snow cover (%); overall detection probability was 0.60 (95% CI = 0.52-0.68) with 91 of 152 elk groups detected. Predictive capability of the selected model was excellent (ROC = 0.807), and prediction accuracy ranged from 70.2% to 73.7%. Cross-validation of the selected model with other population estimation methods resulted in comparable estimates. Application of our model should be applied cautiously if characteristics of the area (e.g., vegetation cover > 50%, snow cover > 90%, group sizes > 16 elk) differ notably from the range of variability in these factors under which the model was developed.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

4:00pm

(FISHERIES: HABITAT) Comparing the Effects of Artificial Habitat and Coarse Woody Habitat on Macroinvertebrate Communities and Largemouth Bass Growth
AUTHORS: Eric J. Gates, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; Anthony Porreca, Illinois Natural History Survey; Joseph Parkos III, Illinois Natural History Survey; David H. Wahl, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

ABSTRACT: Lentic ecosystems are negatively affected by habitat degradation due to reservoir senescence and riparian zone development. The addition of coarse woody habitat (CWH) and artificial habitat (e.g., plastic fish attractors) is a popular management strategy used to enhance systems that have experienced declines in habitat availability. However, the mechanisms by which CWH and artificial habitat additions influence aquatic food webs remain understudied. We introduced either artificial habitat structures or CWH (Quercus alba) into ten 0.04-ha experimental ponds to test whether macroinvertebrate communities and largemouth bass growth differed between introduced habitats. The experiment ran for three months and structures were allowed to condition for one month prior to stocking juvenile largemouth bass. Macroinvertebrate communities were similar between habitat types. However, more taxa were found on the artificial structures and macroinvertebrate communities colonizing CWH appeared to increase relative to artificial habitat by the end of experiment. Largemouth bass growth did not differ between CWH and artificial habitat. Although not specifically tested, macroinvertebrate communities appeared to be influenced by the presence and amount of periphyton colonizing habitat structures. Our results indicate that habitat material itself was not as important as providing a stable substrate for primary production and subsequent macroinvertebrate colonization. Longer experiments may be necessary to determine the maximum influence of these habitats on primary and secondary productivity, particularly as CWH conditions.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) Crappies in Ohio: Building a General Approach to Determining Regulation Success Based on Standard Fish Population Assessments and Angler Feedback
AUTHORS: Joseph D. Conroy, Jeremy J. Pritt, Kevin S. Page, Stephen M. Tyszko, Richard D. Zweifel – Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: Crappie harvest regulations seek to increase yield by allowing additional growth before anglers remove fish from the population.  Density-dependent slow growth, stunting, potential for overharvest, angler preferences for larger crappies, and angler preferences for regulations all present challenges to successfully managing crappie fisheries by using harvest regulations.  In Ohio, minimum length limits for harvest and daily bag limits have been used to regulate crappie populations since the early 1990s, with regulations enacted at more than 40 reservoirs by 2010.  The success of these regulations was assessed by examining changes in abundance (CPUE of age-2 crappies and older), growth (mean length at age 2), and size structure (PSD of harvestable-sized fish) from standard assessments conducted during the period 2003–2017.  Further, we determined angler satisfaction with the numbers and sizes of crappies caught post-regulation along with their support for the regulation from interviews during creel surveys and from postcard surveys during 2017.  Using linear mixed models, we found that in general the regulation led to increased crappie abundance, slowed growth, and changed size structure; the regulation benefited crappie populations more in larger (> 1,000 ha) and more productive (total phosphorus concentrations > 75 micrograms/L) reservoirs.  Angler satisfaction (percent satisfied) with the numbers of crappies caught ranged 30–68% and with the sizes of crappies caught ranged 24–72%, yet there was clear support for both the minimum length limit (percent support ranged 64–92%) and the daily bag limit (66–93%) with little opposition (percent opposition was < 11%) to the regulation.  These analyses ultimately led to removing the minimum length limit and daily bag regulation at 13 reservoirs.  More importantly, however, a general approach to regulation evaluation was developed, which includes analysis of standardized data on both fish populations and their anglers.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Using Landscape Genetics to Understand Connectivity of an Island Population of Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus catenatus)
AUTHORS: Nathan Kudla, Grand Valley State University; Eric McCluskey, Grand Valley State University; Jen Moore, Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT: Populations with low gene flow can become negatively influenced by increased levels of inbreeding, lower genetic diversity, and reduced adaptive potential. Landscape genetics allows for spatial and genetic information to be analyzed simultaneously to better understand how the landscape influences gene flow. This information is then used to estimate population connectivity and identify landscape features which act as barriers or promoters of gene flow. The eastern massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus) is a federally threatened viper typically found in wetlands throughout the Great Lakes region. Due primarily to a loss of habitat, many remaining populations are small and isolated. This lack of connectivity brings into question the survival of these populations into the future. Unlike many other populations, the eastern massasauga rattlesnakes on Bois Blanc Island, Michigan live in a relatively undisturbed habitat with a potential for high connectivity across the 88 km<sup>2</sup> landscape. We used landscape genetics to estimate genetic connectivity of eastern massasauga rattlesnakes across Bois Blanc Island. 109 Individuals were genotyped at 16 microsatellite loci and pairwise genetic distances were calculated as the proportion of shared alleles (D<sub>ps</sub>). We used resistance surface modeling to assess how the island landscape is influencing gene flow. Our results will provide insight into how eastern massasauga rattlesnake populations function in areas with limited human presence and minimal landscape alteration and if population connectivity can be maintained across a well-connected landscape with high abundance.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Energy Pathways to Prey Fishes Across a Productivity Gradient: A Case-study in the Laurentian Great Lakes
AUTHORS: Anne Scofield, Paris Collingsworth, Tomas Höök – Purdue University; David Bunnell, USGS Great Lakes Science Center; Aaron Fisk, University of Windsor Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research; Tim Johnson, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources; Brian Weidel, USGS Lake Ontario Biological Station

ABSTRACT: Natural stable isotope ratios of nitrogen (d<sup>15</sup>N) and carbon (d<sup>13</sup>C) have proven to be valuable tools for identifying basal energy sources for fish production and describing trophic complexity, but cross-lake comparisons of stable isotope data are often limited by challenges associated with standardizing study design and isotopic baselines. Over the past decade, a great number of resources have been invested to generate stable isotope data for the lower food web and prey fishes across all five of the Great Lakes through the bi-national Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI), providing opportunities for robust cross-lake comparisons. In this study, we investigate differences in nearshore subsidies and trophic transfer efficiencies to prey fish across the productivity gradient observed in the Great Lakes, which range from eutrophic (western Lake Erie) to ultra-oligotrophic (e.g., Lake Superior). Using rainbow smelt as a case study, we examine the basal carbon sources and trophic positions of prey fish in the offshore regions of the five lakes. We also consider how differences in the densities on non-native species, such as dreissenid mussels, may affect resource distribution and energy flow to fishes. Quantifying how trophic structures in lakes differ across a productivity gradient can help elucidate the consequences of human actions such as nutrient management programs, fish stocking, and non-native species introductions.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-05) Regulation of Single Turbines and Small-Scale Wind Facilities in Ohio
AUTHORS: Donald Bauman, Ken Mauer, Kimberly Kaufman – Black Swamp Bird Observatory

ABSTRACT: Current Ohio law is gravely deficient in providing any review of the biological resource impacts caused by the construction of single commercial-size wind turbines or small-scale multi-turbine wind farms.  This oversight is especially problematic when such turbines are constructed in environmentally sensitive areas, such as the southern shore of Lake Erie and the major migratory flyways associated with the Lake.  As pressure for renewable energy increases it is likely that exploitation of this large regulatory deficiency will increasingly be utilized to the detriment of Ohio’s public trust biological resources.  As such projects are often not publicized in advance of construction and it is very difficult to raise concerns about them in a meaningful way, a systematic means of controlling such wind turbine projects appeared to be necessary.  Accordingly, the Black Swamp Bird Observatory and its Conservation Committee have developed proposed legislation which would provide a mandatory, scientifically-based review process to be implemented in defined geographic areas for construction of commercial-size wind turbines falling below the current 5MW Ohio Power Siting Board review threshold.  Favorable reaction to the proposal has been received from interested legislators and key Ohio government agencies.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

4:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-06) Effect of Beaver on Brook Trout Habitat in North Shore Lake Superior Streams
AUTHORS: Dr. Andrew Hafs, Kathryn Renik – Bemidji State University

ABSTRACT: In Minnesota, Beaver Castor canadensis are considered to have an overall negative affect on native Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis. Brook trout provide a valued and productive sport fishery to the North Shore streams of Lake Superior and since revival of the Beaver population from past trapping and timber harvest, a need emerges to examine the complex ecological relationship where the two taxa interact. Suitable Brook Trout habitat is characterized by cold, spring-fed water with silt-free rocky substrate and abundant cover, all of which Beaver may directly, or indirectly, affect. Data collection occurred on 80 (200 m) stream sections and 22 beaver ponds spanning the North Shore during summers 2017 and 2018. A habitat suitability index (HSI) model was employed, and through interpolation in geographic information systems (GIS), maps depicting Brook Trout habitat of sampled stream sections were produced. The average HSI and suitable area (m<sup>2</sup>/100 m<sup>2</sup>) of each sampled reach were compared to Beaver related activity, including reach slope, distance to nearest Beaver pond, and number of dams upstream of sampled sites. Classification regression trees were used to identify significant thresholds in which Beaver activity influenced the amount or quality of Brook Trout habitat. Preliminary results from 2017 data indicated that a greater area of suitable Brook Trout habitat in North Shore streams was achieved when the maximum tree line width of the nearest upstream Beaver pond was = 71.23 m.  Anticipated results from 2018 will be presented contingent on completion of data analysis. Since the effect of Beaver on Brook Trout varies regionally, this study will provide a simple decision-making flow chart to aid in the development of management strategies pertaining to these two species in North Shore, Lake Superior streams.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

4:20pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 1) Examination of a Modular Electrical Barrier for Deterring Fish Movements
AUTHORS: Scott F Collins, Anthony Porreca, Michael Nannini, Joseph Parkos III, David Wahl – INHS

ABSTRACT: A modular electrical barrier (MEB) was developed as a tool to deter or disrupt the movement of fishes for the purposes of an adaptive approach to pest management.  The design required a non-physical barrier that would not impede boat traffic or floating debris, sufficient power to generate an electrical field at a diverse set of locations, modularity such that the MEB can be transported to logistically feasible locations, and be safely operable by fisheries professionals. The MEB system consists of generators which provide power to one or multiple 5-kW pulsers which modulate the electrical output to the electrodes (anode and cathode steel cables).  Individual pulsers can be linked to fit location dimensions (depth, width, conductivity). To test the effectiveness of the MEB, we conducted an experiment consisting of two trials in separate 0.4-ha ponds.  For each trial, we constructed a large RFID antenna (1 × 30 m) and PIT-tagged (23 × 3.85 mm HDX tags) individual fish from 8 species (4 invasive, 3 native) in order to track fish activity (total detections; average detections) in response to operation of the MEB.  When the MEB was off, ambient fish activity ranged from 500-1600 detections per day.  While the MEB was on, the number of fish detections dropped to only 7 total (6 or 0.05% of trial 1; 1 or 0.01% of trial 2), and most detections were associated with fish mortality.  After the MEB was turned off, fish detections increased after a few hours, and fish activity returned to peak numbers after 4.5 days.  Findings from this experiment indicate that the MEB can greatly deter fish movements; however, like all non-physical barriers, it may not be 100% effective at stopping fish.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

4:20pm

(FISHERIES: FISH CONSERVATION) Successful Translocation of Bluebreast Darters: A Case Study from the Upper Licking River, Ohio
AUTHORS: Brian J. Zimmerman, S. Mažeika P. Sullivan – The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Aquatic ecosystems of Ohio historically supported diverse and abundant stream and river fish communities.  Loss and fragmentation of high-quality aquatic habitat and impairments in water quality have led to significant alterations in the diversity, composition, and productivity of native fish communities. The Bluebreast Darter (Etheostoma camurum), for example, was extirpated from many Ohio river systems over a century ago. In June of 2016 and 2017, 974 and 924 adult Bluebreast Darters, respectively, were translocated from the greater Muskingum River basin into the upper Licking River. Translocated individuals were marked with visible implant elastomer (VIE) tags. Translocated individuals from both events continue to be recaptured in follow-up surveys, most recently in late August 2018. VIE tags revealed minimal movement between release sites, however a few individuals have traveled as far as nine river kilometers following translocation. Natural reproduction by translocated fish has been documented by the capture of untagged individuals beginning in the first follow up surveys in 2016 and continues to be observed in subsequent years.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

4:20pm

(WILDLIFE: CERVIDS) Elk Habitat Suitability and Potential of Public and Private Lands in Michigan
AUTHORS: Chad R. Williamson, Henry Campa III, Scott R. Winterstein – Michigan State University; Alexandra B. Locher, Grand Valley State University; Dean E. Beyer, Jr., Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: To determine current habitat suitability for elk (Cervus elaphus) in Michigan, we developed a stand-level (fine-scale) habitat suitability index (HSI) model for public lands, and a landscape-level (coarse-scale) HSI model for public and private lands. For our stand-level HSI model, we used forest compartment inventory data to identify cover types important to elk, and assigned suitability values (0=low, 1=high) to each cover type for elk life requisites (spring food, winter food, winter thermal cover). Additionally, we modified suitability values based on stand conditions (e.g., stand size, age of aspen [Populus spp.], % canopy closure). For our landscape-level HSI model, we used satellite imagery to classify cover types and assigned suitability values to cover types for each life requisite. Our HSI models indicate a heterogeneous arrangement of high suitability for spring food (openings, aspen) and winter food (aspen, hardwoods, conifers) throughout our study area, and several large areas of high suitability for winter thermal cover (conifers) in the southern edge of our study area. Our landscape-level model provided suitability for private lands, but overestimated areas of high suitability in comparison to our stand-level model. Habitat potential was modeled by delineating habitat types by overlaying digital spatial data layers (soils, land-type associations, vegetation) and identifying successional trajectories using habitat classification guides and literature. We assigned suitability values to each habitat type for life requisites at early to late successional stages. Comparisons between current elk habitat suitability and habitat potential identify key areas where managers can maximize management efforts for elk in Michigan. Areas determined to have higher habitat potential may become focus areas if they are not currently being managed or have low suitability. Conversely, areas with low habitat potential may be avoided for continued or future elk habitat management.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

4:20pm

(FISHERIES: HABITAT) The Influence of Season and Streamflow on Habitat Selection of Spotted Bass and Shorthead Redhorse Downstream of a Hydropeaking Dam in Central Missouri, USA
AUTHORS: Elisa Baebler, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, The School of Natural Resources, University of Missouri; Craig Paukert, U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, The School of Natural Resources, University of Missouri

ABSTRACT: Downstream of hydropeaking dams, water depth and velocity fluctuate rapidly, which leads to short-term changes in physical habitat supporting aquatic organisms. While some fish species have been extirpated from flow-regulated systems, other species flourish, which may be related to the persistence of critical habitats complementary to these life histories. We used radio telemetry to evaluate the influence of season and streamflow on the habitat selection of two common, native fishes downstream of Bagnell Dam in central Missouri from April 2016 to June 2017. We studied Spotted Bass (Micropterus punctulatus), nest-guarding, sight feeding, habitat generalists and Shorthead Redhorse (Moxostoma macrolepidotum), fluvial dependent, migratory, benthic feeders. Spotted Bass selected moderate depths near submerged cover in all seasons and slow velocities during spring and summer. Conversely, Shorthead Redhorse preferred moderately deep and faster flowing habitats during spring and summer and used slow velocities and shallow depths during winter. Spotted Bass and Shorthead Redhorse selected velocity, depth, submerged cover, and distance to shore during stable and/or fluctuating flows, suggesting that fish may respond to streamflow over short time periods (daily). Spotted Bass used slow velocities (less than 0.4 m/s) in both fluctuating and stable flows, whereas, Shorthead Redhorse preferred fast velocities (greater than 1.0 m/s) in stable flows but did not select velocity during fluctuating flows. Shorthead Redhorse and Spotted Bass habitat selection illustrates that even native fish that prosper in regulated rivers have habitat requirements which may be better met through managing flow releases to maintain river habitats that support native fish of multiple guilds.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-01) A Portfolio Approach to Integrated Assessment and Research Can Provide a Larger Context for the Successful Evaluation of Fisheries Harvest Regulations
AUTHORS: Martha E. Mather, U. S. Geological Survey, Kansas Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Division of Biology, Kansas State University; John M. Dettmers, Great Lakes Fishery Commission; Roy A. Stein, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, The Ohio State University; Donna L. Parrish, U.S. Geological Survey, Vermont Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Vermont; David Glover, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Harvest regulations are essential tools that fisheries managers use to alter fish populations and achieve angler satisfaction. Evaluation of regulations is essential but evaluating all regulations for all species in all systems across multiple time periods is not logistically feasible. Thus, a strategic plan that identifies what regulations need to be evaluated where, when, and how can assist effective decision-making. Specifically, an integrated framework of assessment and research (i.e., the portfolio approach) can provide a larger context in which to design, implement, and interpret harvest regulation evaluations. Using examples, we illustrate this multi-step approach. First, a shared vision for individual fisheries (species, system, individual population, goal) that is jointly created by a collaborative group of researchers and managers is essential. Second, using a series of linked questions, objectives, and goals, the collaborative team can conceptualize (a) desired outcomes of specific harvest regulations given population characteristics, (b) challenges to achieving those outcomes, and (c) data needed to differentiate among population responses to regulations. Third, by applying a portfolio of interacting data types (e.g., assessment, applied research, basic science, synthesis), researchers and managers can operationalize a pathway to achieve the desired angler outcome given existing population conditions. Fourth, by using rigorous scientific principles, the team can improve all aspects of assessment and research. Specifically, a strategic plan that considers multiple starting population conditions, a range of harvest regulations, and different angler outcomes can integrate all assessment and research data to better inform management decisions. Fifth, adhering to a set of agreed-upon, regularly-evaluated 10-year goals allows fisheries professionals to track progress and plan next steps. Although agencies face different challenges across species, systems, and populations, all can advance successful science-based management by utilizing components of this portfolio approach for harvest regulation evaluation.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-02) Does Habitat Area Influence Genetic Diversity? A Case Study with the Eastern Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus)
AUTHORS: Eric McCluskey, Grand Valley State University; H. Lisle Gibbs, The Ohio State University; Scott Martin, The Ohio State University; Jennifer Moore, Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT: The loss of genetic diversity in fragmented landscapes is a major concern for threatened and endangered species. Reductions in patch size and connectivity are expected to further erode genetic diversity for isolated populations. In order to preserve genetic diversity, most conservation efforts are focused on ameliorating the connectivity issue via corridor creation to promote gene flow. Addressing the potential loss of genetic diversity from a habitat perspective is less straightforward because the relationship between habitat area and genetic diversity has not been thoroughly investigated across taxa in the field of landscape genetics. We examined this relationship for a federally threatened species, Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus), that is largely restricted to isolated populations making loss of genetic diversity a pertinent management issue. We obtained genetic diversity data from populations across the range that varied in habitat amount and land use history. A subset of these are in states (IL, MI, and OH) with historic land cover datasets, derived from Public Land Surveys conducted prior to most land alterations associated with European colonization and expansion. We evaluated the relationship between various habitat metrics and genetic diversity across multiple spatial and temporal scales. Across the range, genetic diversity does not appear to be directly related to habitat area at the patch level within contemporary environments. We did detect a lasting genetic signal from historic habitat levels at a broad scale. Populations with high habitat area estimates from the 1800s exhibited moderate to high genetic diversity, despite dramatic habitat loss in some cases. These results demonstrate a certain degree of genetic resiliency among historically robust populations. Hence, even small, remnant populations may still harbor allelic diversity that could be maintained with proactive habitat management to boost population size and connectivity.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-04) Density and Biomass of Drifting Macroinvertebrates in the Upper St. Marys River: A Comparison of the Power Canal and Main Rapids
AUTHORS: Tristan Tackman (Student); Dr. Ashely Moerke (Professor/Undergraduate Advisor); Jake Larsen (Graduate) – School of Natural Resources and Environment, Lake Superior State University

ABSTRACT: The St. Marys River is the only outflow of Lake Superior and feeds both Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. The river itself rears a majority of these lakes’ sports fishes by providing ample spawning grounds; these young fish rely on small macroinvertebrates for most of their growth in early years. The objective of this study was to quantify and compare the supply of drifting invertebrates from the main rapids and the hydropower canal in an effort to understand key food sources available for fishes in the river.  To do so, two larval drift nets were set overnight in the rapids and canal to collect drifting invertebrates during the months of May and June 2016.  For each date biomass was calculated asash free dry weight and density was calculated as number of invertebrates per 100m<sup>3</sup>. Densities were the highest for Hydropsychidae and Mysidae at both sites, andcomprised 18% (the remanding 82% being non-dominant taxa) and 9.5% in the rapids and 26.7% and 8.9% in the canal site. Although Mysidaedensities were higher than other taxa, Hydropsychidae contributed more biomass to the system in both sites during May and June of 2016. Additionally, total drift densities were 2.4 times higher in the canal site than the rapids, suggesting that the canal is a better source of invertebrates to the St. Marys River. The canal is likely drawing water from more offshore areas in Lake Superior, which may explain the higher numbers of drifting Mysids in the canal site compared to the rapids.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:40pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 1) Selective, Safe and Low Cost Piscicide
AUTHORS: Maurice Sadowsky, President, MJSTI Corp.

ABSTRACT: MJSTI proved a selective, safe and low-cost fish pesticide with the goal of controlling the bighead and silver carps (bigheaded carps).  The technology and experiments will be discussed and compared to the USGS antimycin A/beeswax formulation (with patent lawyers’ approval).  The US patent should be submitted in 2018.  The formulation is selective as a digestive poison.  It is safe using FDA additives.  The average raw material cost is 1/12 to 1/30<sup>th</sup> of MJSTI’s estimated USGS antimycin A/beeswax raw material cost.  The EPA registration should be for a new formulation since the component chemicals are all EPA registered pesticide ingredients.  The technology has application for other fish including common carp and potentially grass carp.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

4:40pm

(FISHERIES: FISH CONSERVATION) Fisheries Evaluation of the Frankenmuth Rock Ramp in Frankenmuth, MI
AUTHORS: Paige Wigren, Justin Chiotti, and James Boase – United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Alpena Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office – Detroit River Substation; Joseph Leonardi, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Bay City Field Office; Tracy Galarowicz, Central Michigan University, Department of Biology

ABSTRACT: The installment of rock ramps to replace failing dams is a fairly new technique in the Midwest and little research has been done to assess the success of fish passage. In 2004, the structural condition of the Frankenmuth Dam was assessed and deemed to be in fair condition, but no longer functional, prompting officials to pursue dam removal. In order to maintain historic water levels in the impounded area above the dam, a thirteen-tier rock ramp was constructed in the fall of 2015 aimed at improving the connectivity and ecology of the Cass River watershed, a tributary to Saginaw Bay, MI. Prior to dam removal, electrofishing surveys were conducted in the spring and summer between 2010 – 2012 to record fish species composition above and below the existing dam. Post removal electrofishing surveys were conducted in the spring and summer between 2016 – 2018 with the goal of tagging fish downstream of the rock ramp and documenting changes in fish community composition. A total of 2,605 fish were tagged and 30 of these fish were recaptured upstream of the rock ramp. Since the construction of the rock ramp, 12 fish species not previously detected upstream have been captured, including freshwater drum, walleye, gizzard shad, flathead catfish, and round goby. Results indicate the rock ramp allows fish to access habitat upstream of the former dam, however passage is likely dependent upon river discharge during migration periods.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

4:40pm

(WILDLIFE: CERVIDS) Understanding Relationships Between Deer Demographics, Deer Health and Forest Vegetation Through Partnerships with Wisconsin Hunters
AUTHORS: Amanda McGraw, Daniel Storm – Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Deer health reflects habitat quality, climate, and interspecific competition. Deer health, in turn, is reflected in body condition, including body weight and fat reserves. To relate deer health to habitat quality, climate, deer density levels, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources began a collaborative project with landowners enrolled in the state’s Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP) to collect data on harvested deer and available forage on private properties. DMAP cooperators were recruited as to participate as citizen scientists through outreach including public presentations and email announcements during 2017 and 2018. Several training tools were developed to facilitate quality data collection by cooperators. Data collection kits containing all necessary supplies was provided to cooperators. In 2017 we received data from 57 DMAP cooperators for 280 deer. Cooperators measured several morphological characteristics indicative of body condition and overall health, such as antler dimensions and carcass weight. Cooperators extracted a tooth for aging via cementum annuli and photographed hearts for organ fat estimation. Age explained 66% of variance for female deer carcass weight (R<sup>2</sup> = 0.64, F<sub>1,6</sub> = 20.61, p < 0.001) and 81.7% of variance for male carcass weight (R<sup>2</sup> = 0.81 F<sub>1,6</sub> = 64.19, p < 0.001). Less variation in antler width (Deviance = 0.57, R<sup>2</sup> = 0.56, F<sub>1,6</sub> = 13.39, p < 0.001) and number of antler points (Deviance = 0.55, R<sup>2</sup> = 0.53, F<sub>1,6</sub> = 12.45, p < 0.001) was explained by age for male deer. We are continuing to explore the potential effects of density, habitat, and weather on deer body condition and antler development. This study highlights methods developed to ensure quality data collection by citizen scientists, and feasibility of operating a citizen-science based research project at a state-wide scale. We also provide insights about how habitat quality on private lands impacts deer health and productivity.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

4:40pm

(FISHERIES: HABITAT) Assessment of the Accuracy of Spatially Interpolated Brook Trout Habitat in Northeast Minnesota Streams
AUTHORS: Kathryn Renik, Dr. Andrew Hafs, Dr. Jeffrey Ueland – Bemidji State University

ABSTRACT: Developments in geographic information systems (GIS) and improved global positioning system (GPS) unit accuracy have allowed for advancement and are increasingly being used to collect spatial data in ecological studies. Benefits include decreased error in the field and ease of usability, allowing for quicker and more accurate field measurements. The objective of this study was to quantify the accuracy of predicted Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis habitat from spatially interpolated GIS maps generated using a Trimble Geo7x handheld GPS unit. Brook Trout habitat variables were collected at data points throughout 40 (200m) stream reaches during summer 2018 in Northeastern Minnesota. Data was recorded directly onto the Geo7x GPS unit and two different data point types were collected, data points for creating interpolated habitat maps (“map data points”) and reference data points.  A habitat suitability index model was utilized to predict Brook Trout habitat and produce spatially interpolated GIS maps by kriging. Quantification of interpolated map accuracy was determined by comparing the interpolated values to the reference data points. An error matrix was used to calculate overall accuracy, user’s accuracy, producer’s accuracy, and the kappa coefficient, allowing us to determine the ability of interpolated maps to accurately predict Brook Trout habitat. Accurate Brook Trout habitat maps provide management not only with tools to successfully manage the species, but also with illustrative visual aides that allow for improved communication within agencies and among the public.

Monday January 28, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

5:00pm

AFS NCD Business Meeting
Monday January 28, 2019 5:00pm - 6:30pm
TBD

5:00pm

Student / Professional Networking Mixer
The University of Toledo’s Rocket Student Subunit of the American Fisheries Society will be hosting a trivia night for this year’s student-professional mixer. Students and professionals will be mixed together in teams randomly assigned at the start of the event and following a short ice-breaker, will be tested on their knowledge of all things fish, wildlife, the Midwest, and other miscellaneous facts. Dust off your encyclopedic minds and join us in the quest for useless knowledge.


Monday January 28, 2019 5:00pm - 7:30pm
TBD

7:30pm

Time on Own
Monday January 28, 2019 7:30pm - 11:00pm
N/A
 
Tuesday, January 29
 

7:00am

Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors
Tuesday January 29, 2019 7:00am - 8:00am
TBD

7:00am

Conference Registration Desk Open
Tuesday January 29, 2019 7:00am - 6:00pm
TBD

7:00am

Speaker Ready Room
Tuesday January 29, 2019 7:00am - 6:00pm
TBD

8:00am

Plenary Session II: Welcome
Tuesday January 29, 2019 8:00am - 8:10am
TBD

8:10am

Plenary Session II: Communicating the Science and Engaging the Angling Public and Policy Makers: Examples from Fisheries Management in Minnesota
Plenary Speakers
avatar for Don Pereira

Don Pereira

HDR Inc.
Don Pereira recently retired from the Minnesota DNR, where his employment began in 1983.  He spent most of his career in the fisheries research program, including serving as the Research and Policy Manager for the Section of Fisheries for over 6 years.  In 2013 he became the Chief... Read More →


Tuesday January 29, 2019 8:10am - 9:10am
TBD

9:10am

Plenary Session II: Ignite Session
Tuesday January 29, 2019 9:10am - 10:00am
TBD

10:00am

Refreshment Break with Exhibitors
Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:00am - 10:20am
TBD

10:00am

Wild Jobs Café
Attention Students: Be sure to stop by the Wild Jobs Café on Monday and Tuesday to interact with potential employers, meet students and professionals in your area of interest, and get expert advice to help advance your career. Drop in at any time to visit the Resource Tables and Job Board to gain information about employment and graduate opportunities.

The following activities will be available:
  • Resume Writing Review: Want a professional opinion on what makes a strong resume? Sign up for a 15- minute time slot to have a professional review your resume. Participants will be asked to sign up ahead of time; instructions to follow.  
  • Interview Skills: Looking to apply for a position but worried about the interview? Sign up for a 15- minute mini mock interview that will consist of 1-2 questions followed by a critique, so please come prepared to talk. Participants will be asked to sign up ahead of time; instructions to follow.  
  • Job and Graduate Appointment Board in the Wild Job Café: Professionals or graduate advisors with open or anticipated positions can post those opportunities on the jobs and graduate appointment board. General information about job searching, desired skills, and application processes from prospective employers is also welcome. This will be a literal board and table for posting information.
Monday, January 28, 2019
  • 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM / Meet and Greet with potential employers
Tuesday, January 29, 2019
  • 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM / Resume Review (Fisheries, Wildlife, Graduate Students)
  • 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM / Interview Skills/Mock Interviews (sign up for a 15-minute timeslot)

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:00am - 5:00pm
TBD

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-07) Using Acoustic Telemetry to Re-establish Historic Fisheries
AUTHORS: Cameron Goble, Hilary Meyer, Mark Fincel, Chelsey Pasbrig – South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks; Dylan Turner, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Acoustic telemetry is often used to document fish behavior including survival, movement and habitat use. We used information from a combination of a passive acoustic receiver arrays, active tracking, and fisheries assessments to evaluate the potential to reestablish historic Paddlefish (Polyodon spathula) and Shovelnose Sturgeon (Scaphirhynchus platorynchus) fisheries in Lake Sharpe, a Missouri River impoundment in central South Dakota.  In 2015, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service began stocking paddlefish into Lake Sharpe to reestablish a sport fishery last open in 1964. We used acoustic telemetry to document movement patterns and habitat use of translocated adult paddlefish (n =40) and determine post-stocking dispersal and survival of age-0 paddlefish (n = 50). We used information from seasonal movement patterns of translocated adult paddlefish to assess the feasibility of creating a shore based recreational fishery.  Post-stocking dispersal rates of age-0 paddlefish was used to prioritize future stocking locations. We also used acoustic telemetry to document movement and population dynamics (recruitment, growth, mortality) of a remnant Shovelnose Sturgeon (n = 50) population in Lake Sharpe. A combination of acoustic telemetry and a mark-recapture study will provide information on basic population demographics of Shovelnose Sturgeon in Lake Sharpe.  We will incorporate Shovelnose Sturgeon population dynamics into modeling software (e.g. FAMS) to set appropriate harvest regulations for Shovelnose Sturgeon.  Here, we provide a case study of using acoustic telemetry paired with traditional fisheries assessment tools as important components of fisheries management decision making in South Dakota.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-08) Wetland Habitat and Bird Population Changes over Time: the Dynamics of Coastal Wetlands
AUTHORS: John Simpson, Winous Point Marsh Conservancy

ABSTRACT: The lower Great Lakes region has experienced one of the greatest rates of wetland loss in North America. The remaining coastal wetlands, though naturally resilient and dynamic, are subjected to a wide variety of anthropogenic stressors, and losses in both quantity and quality continue. Using western Lake Erie as an example, we can trace changes in wetland habitat and losses since European settlement through a variety of historical records, including changes in wetland-bird, plant abundances and assemblages, and waterfowl populations. While the Great Lakes wetlands remain still under threat, many groups are attempting to restore and protect wetlands throughout the basin and great interest is currently being placed on the role wetlands could possibly have in reducing and mitigating harmful algal blooms that are occurring throughout the lower Great Lakes system.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:20am

(SYMPOSIA-09) Using Carbon Dioxide to Control Aquatic Invasive Species
AUTHORS: Cory Suski, University of Illinois; Kim Fredricks, Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center

ABSTRACT: Carbon dioxide is a commonly occurring, natural compound that is found in aquatic environments. Recently there has been an interest in using zones of elevated carbon dioxide to act as a movement deterrent for both invasive fishes and invertebrates. Despite the promise of this tool to aid in the control of aquatic nuisance species, there are a number of questions and concerns that arise with its use, particularly related to impacts on non-target organisms and the receiving environment. The current talk will provide an overview of carbon dioxide in aquatic environments, and show how carbon dioxide can impact both invertebrates and vertebrates, ranging from physiological disturbances to ion disequilibrium to behavioral changes. The impacts of elevated carbon dioxide on the receiving environment will be discussed, along with summary of factors influencing individual variation to high CO<sub>2</sub>. Directions for future research and unanswered questions will also be outlined. Together, this presentation will provide an overview of how elevated carbon dioxide can impact aquatic ecosystems, and how it can function as a non-physical deterrent for aquatic invasive species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:20am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 2) Evaluating the Influence of Past and Current Environments on Lake Erie Walleye Growth Rates
AUTHORS: L. Zoe Almeida, Ohio State University; Matthew D. Faust, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife; Stuart A. Ludsin, Ohio State University; Elizabeth A. Marschall, Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Growth rates of animals are often assumed to be a response to recent environmental conditions; however, there is increasing evidence from numerous organisms that growth in one year may also be reflective of environmental conditions experienced earlier in life. Therefore, large-scale stressors, such as eutrophication and climate change may affect individuals immediately and latently, which is rarely considered in the management of exploited populations. Herein, we examined the factors that may influence growth rates of Lake Erie walleye (Sander vitreus), a system exposed to eutrophication and climate change. We used data from annual fall gillnet surveys (1978-2015) to characterize median size-at-age of individual annual cohorts in response to changes in physical conditions (e.g., temperature) and the food web (e.g., prey availability) during early life (= age-2), which may have arisen due to eutrophication and climate change (i.e., warming and increased precipitation). We hypothesized that environmental conditions in the current year, growth rates during early-life (as a reflection of early-life environmental conditions), and growth rates in the previous year (as a reflection of recent growth) would affect age-specific annual growth rates. We performed preliminary linear mixed model analyses with the median size within cohorts at age-2 representing early life growth, median growth rate in the previous year, and annual average temperatures. Using a model selection approach, no combination of these factors was better able to predict growth rates than the null model. However, we still need to test for effects of age-0 growth on growth rates later in life and for other environmental effects on growth, including annual cumulative degree days, prey-fish availability, and walleye population size. Our analyses will assist Lake Erie fisheries managers by assessing the relative importance of early-life versus contemporary growth conditions on recent growth performance.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

10:20am

(FISHERIES: LAKES & RESERVOIRS) Otolith Microchemistry as a Tool to Understand Contributions of Stocked Channel Catfish in Reservoir Populations
AUTHORS: Cory Becher, The Ohio State University, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, EEOB; Stephen M. Tyszko, Ohio Department of Natural Resources-Division of Wildlife; Dr. John Olesik, The Ohio State University, Trace Elements Research Laboratory; Dr. Stuart A Ludsin, The Ohio State University, Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, EEOB

ABSTRACT: Stocking is a key management tool used to establish or enhance fisheries in reservoir ecosystems. Quantifying the contribution that stocked individuals make to the fishable population should be an essential component of any stocking program. However, such post-stocking assessment is oftentimes neglected, likely owing to difficulties associated with using conventional (i.e., artificial) tags to discern stocked individuals from wild-produced ones. To help the Ohio Division of Wildlife (DOW) better assess its Channel Catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) reservoir stocking program, we have been evaluating the use of otolith microchemistry—quantified using laser-ablation plasma-mass spectrometry—as a natural tag to discriminate between stocked and wild-produced individuals. Herein, we first present results from predictive quadratic discriminate function (QDF) models that were developed for three reservoirs, which we used to differentiate wild-produced individuals from hatchery-reared individuals. These models were built using known signatures from the hatchery and reservoirs. We used core and edge chemistry of hatchery-reared broodstock and juveniles, as well as the recent edge chemistry of individuals captured in the three reservoirs. Afterwards, we present findings from our predictive analyses, which used the QDF models to classify reservoir individuals unknown core signatures as either stocked (hatchery origin) or wild-produced. Our preliminary findings indicate that otolith microchemistry can be used as a tool to identify the natal origin of wild-caught fish in our study reservoirs, with stocked fish comprising less than half of the population at large in each reservoir. We ultimately discuss the value of this approach for helping management agencies such as the Ohio DOW assess the effectiveness of their channel catfish stocking programs.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

10:20am

(FISHERIES: INVERTEBRATES) Characterizing Macroinvertebrate Community Changes of West Fork White River (1979-2015)
AUTHORS: Caleb Artz, Dr. Mark Pyron – Ball State University

ABSTRACT: Long term macroinvertebrate data (1979-2015) was used to describe and analyze community characteristics of West Fork White River in Muncie, IN. Family abundance, functional feeding group, taxon richness, and sensitivity were analyzed to describe patterns in assemblage shifts. Multivariate statistical analyses was used to determine significant temporal and spatial patterns in the data set. Observed shifts in long term macroinvertebrate data are likely due to advancements in water quality due to the Clean Water Act.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

10:20am

(WILDLIFE: MAMMALS) Managed Forests Provide Roosting Opportunities for Indiana Bats in South-central Indiana
AUTHORS: Scott Bergeson, Purdue University-Fort Wayne; Joy O'Keefe, Indiana State University

ABSTRACT: There is a growing interest in the effects of timber harvest on forest-dwelling bats due to the potential for timber harvest to reduce available habitat. We conducted a study to determine how endangered Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis) select summer roosts within a Midwestern forest managed for timber. In the summers of 2012–2014, we tracked 4 male and 11 female Indiana bats to 49 roosts (n<sub>male </sub>= 24, n<sub>female </sub>= 25) in south-central Indiana, USA. We collected multi-scale data on roosts and associated available trees, randomly located throughout the same landscape. We generated 10 matched pairs conditional logistic regression models based on a priori hypotheses on roost selection and ranked them using Akaike’s Information Criteria. Plausible models explaining female roost selection included those coding for typical Indiana bat maternity roosts and typical tree-cavity bat roosts. Females selected roosts under exfoliating bark on large (17 ± 2 m in height and 34.8 ± 3.0 cm in diameter) standing dead trees and in bat boxes with high solar exposure (28.0 ± 6.0 % canopy closure above roosts). For males, the model coding for predator avoidance was the most plausible explanation of roost selection. Males selected for roosts under exfoliating bark on tall trees (23 ± 2 m; 71% snags) surrounded by snags (4.5 ± 0.7 snags/0.1 ha plot) and live trees (30.4 ± 2.7 live trees/0.1 ha plot). Females roosted in or 10 m from harvest openings and first-stage shelterwood cuts more than expected (15 of 25 roosts) based on their availability on the landscape. Males roosted in harvest openings as expected (3 of 24 roosts). Our results demonstrate that a managed Midwestern forest provides an array of roosts for Indiana bats and that Indiana bats do not actively avoid roosting near harvest openings in this forest.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

10:20am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: POLICY & ENGAGEMENT) Something Fishy or Something Wild? Comparing the Progression, Status, and Needs of Social Science Integration in Fisheries and Wildlife Sides of Conservation
AUTHORS: Abigail Bennett, Shawn Riley – Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: This paper assesses the status and needs for social science research in fisheries and wildlife governance in Michigan. While the use of social science data and the participation of social scientists in fish and wildlife management has expanded over time, significant knowledge gaps remain. In general, there is a need for increased knowledge of stakeholder characteristics, perceptions, and behavior, rigorous analysis of the policy process, and more robust and nuanced understandings of the social, economic, and political implications of policy decisions. A thorough assessment of the context-specific social science research needs and a deeper engagement with theory and methods available for producing the knowledge to meet those needs can support more effective integration of social science into fish and wildlife governance. This study seeks to identify the current gaps in social science knowledge, data, and expertise in the context of Michigan fish and wildlife governance, drawing on interviews with managers, scientists, and other stakeholders. Using the interview data and a literature review, the paper traces the recent evolution of social science engagement in fish and wildlife governance in Michigan. In doing so, the analysis contrasts fisheries and wildlife with respect to how social science integration in management and decision-making has proceeded, highlighting lessons from each. The paper then analyzes interview respondents’ perceptions of the most pressing social science and human dimensions knowledge and information gaps in both sectors, as well as current barriers to closing those gaps. Distilling the major themes emerging from the interview data, the discussion synthesizes relevant social science theories, frameworks, and approaches from multiple disciplines that can guide efforts to rigorously and cohesively advance the integration of social science research in fisheries and wildlife governance. The paper concludes by outlining a research agenda and identifying practical steps toward incorporating the research into policy decision-making.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-07) Biotelemetry Informing Management: Case Studies Exploring Successful Integration of Biotelemetry Data into Fisheries and Habitat Management
AUTHORS: Jill L. Brooks, Fish Ecology and Conservation Physiology Lab, Carleton University; Jacqueline M. Chapman, Fish Ecology and Conservation Physiology Lab, Carleton University; Amanda N. Barkley, University of Windsor; Steven T. Kessel, Daniel P. Haerther Center for Conservation and Research, John G. Shedd Aquarium; Nigel E. Hussey, University of Windsor; Scott G. Hinch, Pacific Salmon Ecology and Conservation Laboratory, University of British Columbia; David A. Patterson, Fisheries and Oceans Canada; Kevin J. Hedges, Fisheries and Oceans Canada; Steven J. Cooke, Fish Ecology and Conservation Physiology Lab, Carleton University; Aaron T. Fisk, University of Windsor; Samuel H. Gruber, Bimini Biological Field Station Foundation; Vivian M. Nguyen, Natural Resources Canada.

ABSTRACT: Biotelemetry data have been successfully incorporated into aspects of fishery and fish habitat management, however, the processes of knowledge mobilization are rarely published in peer-reviewed literature but are valuable and of interest to conservation scientists. Here, we explore case examples from the Great Lakes Acoustic Telemetry Observation System (GLATOS) and the Ocean Tracking Network (OTN), ranging from Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) in BC, Canada, Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) in Cumberland Sound, Canada, and lemon sharks (Negaprion brevirostris) in Florida, USA to document key processes for science-integration. Typical recommendations documented in the literature (e.g., co-production of knowledge, transdisciplinary methodologies, applied research questions) were recorded to have had successful fisheries management integration, although we documented some exceptions. In each case, it was early, active and ongoing communication outside of traditional science communication and the visual evidence of fish movement that were critical in engaging all parties with a vested interest. Networks offer forums for knowledge sharing on lessons learned and development of skills to engage in active communication. Greater investments and attention to develop these skills are needed to foster positive and active relationships that can impart real change in management and conservation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-08) Evolution of Wetland Conservation and Policy: Developing Programs and Partnerships
AUTHORS: Steven A. Gray, Retired Ohio Division of Wildlife; Gildo M. Tori, Ducks Unlimited; David Brakhage, Ducks Unlimited;

ABSTRACT: Wetland conservation in the Lower Great Lakes region occurred shortly after European settlement.  The rich marshes provide excellent waterfowl hunting, spurring the growth of private duck hunting clubs, maintained and managed the land for hunting, fishing and trapping. These early sportsmen spawned the development of early conservation groups like Ducks Unlimited and state Fish and Wildlife Agencies in the early 1900s.  With the initiation of funding mechanisms like duck stamps, hunting licenses and excise taxes on sporting equipment, lands were purchased as state and national wildlife areas and opened to the general public for outdoor recreation.  As populations expanded, conservation became more sophisticated with the development of flyway councils to regulate harvest of migratory birds, but conservation of habitats did not keep pace.  As a result the North American Waterfowl Management Plan and habitat joint ventures was born aimed at dramatically increasing wetlands and associated habitats throughout North America.  Subsequent policy efforts created the North American Wetlands Conservation Act in 1989, which encouraged partnerships and provided federal grants to advance conservation.  The lower Great Lakes region was a focal area and received many grants to facilitate wetland restoration, on both public and private lands.  The 1985 and 1991 Farm Bills created programs such as the Conservation and Wetland Reserve Programs that conserved soil, water and wildlife.However, wetland loss and need continued to grow. In May 2004 President George Bush issued an Executive Order, which recognized the Great Lakes as a "national treasure” and in 2010, the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative was launched out of the collaboration, and President Barack Obama and Congress provided federal funding to support habitat conservation efforts.This presentation will focus on the historical development, challenges and opportunities, and advancement of wetland conservation in the lower Great Lakes region.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-09) Development of Carbon Dioxide as a Tool for Invasive Fish Management
AUTHORS: Aaron Cupp, U.S. Geological Survey; David Smith, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Cory Suski, University of Illinois; Kim Fredricks, U.S. Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Carbon dioxide (CO<sub>2</sub>) is being developed as a new fisheries control chemical. Several recent studies have demonstrated that fish consistently avoid areas of elevated CO<sub>2</sub> when given access to other freshwater sources. Results from these studies suggest that resource managers could apply CO<sub>2</sub> at pinch-point or other key management locations within rivers to block upstream migration of invasive fishes (e.g. Asian carps, sea lamprey, round goby). A full-scale demonstration of this deterrent technology is being planned for 2019 at a navigational lock to better determine the costs, effectiveness, safety and overall feasibility of CO<sub>2</sub> as a fish deterrent method. In addition to using CO<sub>2</sub> as a behavioral deterrent, other recent studies have also demonstrated that CO<sub>2</sub> is an effective non-selective piscicide (fish toxicant). Carbon dioxide injected under-ice using various delivery methods was effective at reducing the overwinter survival of several non-native cyprinids. Further development of CO<sub>2</sub> as a piscicide could give managers an inexpensive, safe, and effective method to control invasive fish populations. Results from previous studies using CO<sub>2</sub> as a behavioral deterrent and piscicide will be discussed with specific focus on upcoming field studies aimed at transitioning CO<sub>2</sub> into a useful management tool.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:40am

(SYMPOSIA-10) OBCP: An Agency Perspective
AUTHORS: Kate Parsons, ODNR-Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT: The goal of the Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership is to conduct outstanding scientific research that directly benefits the citizens of Ohio by providing sound, scientifically-based advice for managing endangered species and other species of greatest conservation need in the state. From the state wildlife agency’s perspective, sound science is critical to management decisions. The OBCP research projects are used to focus on key information, whether it’s better understanding a species habitat needs or population structure. The faculty at OSU have the expertise to develop and conduct research that addresses current and emerging issues in wildlife conservation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

10:40am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 2) Density-Dependent and Independent Effects on Walleye Harvest in Lake Erie
AUTHORS: David Dippold, The Ohio State University; Grant Adams, University of Washington; Stuart Ludsin, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Both density-dependent and density-independent factors can affect the harvest of exploited fish populations. For instance, inter-annual variation in temperature could modify the timing and spatial extent of fish migrations, and in turn, fishery catches. However, this relationship could be mediated by density-dependent factors, if for example, high fish abundance leads to widespread habitat use that reduces the effects of temperature on migration and subsequent harvest. Toward understanding the relative influence of these factors on fishery harvest, we quantified the relationship among temperature, population size, and the temporal and spatial distribution of walleye (Sander vitreus) recreational harvest in Lake Erie during 1990-2015. Knowing that adult walleye migrate eastward from the western basin during spring and summer towards cooler temperatures, we hypothesized that: 1) years with higher spring and summer temperatures would be accompanied by reduced catches in the western basin relative to the deeper, cooler central and east basins; 2) walleye catches in the central and eastern basins would occur earlier during the spring/summer in warmer (relative to cooler) years; and 3) these relationships would be more apparent in years of low population size because in years of high abundance, walleye (especially young adults) would continue to reside in the west basin throughout the summer. To test our hypotheses, we constructed and compared variable coefficient generalized additive models, which used spatially-explicit (10x10 min grids) recreational catch and effort information, as well as temperature, bathymetric, and lake-wide abundance data. Beyond discussing the role of temperature and total abundance in driving spatiotemporal patterns in walleye harvest, we discuss the implications for fisheries management under a changing climate.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

10:40am

(FISHERIES: LAKES & RESERVOIRS) Age and Growth of Blue Catfish in Two North-Central Kansas Reservoirs
AUTHORS: Ernesto Flores, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism; William J. Stark, Fort Hays State University

ABSTRACT: Age information is a management tool used by fisheries biologists to characterize populations. The Blue Catfish (Ictaluris furcatus) is a riverine species that grow to trophy lengths and have been introduced into Kansas Reservoirs. Blue Catfish were introduced into Wilson Reservoir in 2006 and Lovewell Reservoir in 2010 with a common management objective, establishing a trophy fishery. Standard sampling protocol (SSP) has misrepresented the Blue Catfish population status in both reservoirs; a targeted sampling effort was conducted in the summer of 2016 in Lovewell Reservoir using low-pulse electrofishing and in 2017 using float-lines to gain insight on the population structure. A total 170 fish were collected from Wilson Reservoir with a TL ranging 210-860 mm. We sampled Lovewell Reservoir and collected 146 individuals ranging from 220-860 mm. Pectoral spines were collected from each individual and used for aging. Annual stockings were scheduled for Lovewell reservoir from 2010-2014 approximately at 1 fish/acre excluding the year 2013 stocking at 0.33 fish/acre. Age 6 fish comprised 52% of the sample, 2% at age 5, 13% age 4, 3% age 3, 23% age 2, and 4% age 1. Wilson Blue Catfish stocking rates were conducted at 2 fish/acre in 2006 and 2008; stocking rates were 1 fish/acre in 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016. Age 11 fish made up 13% of the sample, age 10 at 49%, 36% were age 9, and 7% age 1. Age classes 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 were not represented in the sample. Detection of these missing year classes may have been caused by low lake levels during this time period.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

10:40am

(FISHERIES: INVERTEBRATES) Response of Benthic Macroinvertebrates to Dam Removal in the Restoration of the Boardman River, Northern Michigan, USA
AUTHORS: Joel Betts, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, MSU; Dave Mahan, Au Sable Institute; Eric Nord, Greenville University; Jessica Tinklenberg, Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, Purdue University; Alison N. Goetz, Institute for Marine Mammal Studies; Fred Van Dyke, Au Sable Institute

ABSTRACT: Dams are ecologically harmful to streams because they impede ecosystem connectivity and alter hydrology, leading to changes in aquatic community structure and function. Dam removal is a useful stream restoration technique, but can have initial or prolonged negative impacts on aquatic communities. From 2011 to 2016, we monitored responses of benthic macroinvertebrates to dam removal in the Boardman River, a fifth order groundwater fed stream in northern Michigan. We used benthic macroinvertebrates as indicators of ecosystem quality to assess the river before and after the Brown Bridge Dam was removed in September 2012. Dam removal had an initial depressive effect on %EPT and taxa richness of the downstream macroinvertebrate community, but was followed by recovery to a community composition similar to undisturbed conditions within two to four years downstream of the dam. In the newly restored channel in the reservoir area, establishment of diverse, environmentally-sensitive macroinvertebrate communities occurred within the first year of removal, indicating improvement over time (%EPT was higher in 2015 compared to 2013 and 2014). Other metrics and taxa-specific observations supported these patterns below the dam and in the new channel. We also observed increasing abundance of non-native New Zealand mudsnails (Potamopyrgus antipodarum) after removal from 2013 to 2016, which significantly affected density and diversity indices by 2016. These results suggest that dam removal can result in restoration of pre-impoundment ecological communities of benthic macroinvertebrates in small, groundwater-driven streams. Future research should further consider the relationship between dam removal and the spread of aquatic non-native species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

10:40am

(WILDLIFE: MAMMALS) Camera Trap Efficacy for Determining Mammal Occupancy in Northern Hardwood Forests, Michigan
AUTHORS: Melissa D. Starking, Michigan State University; Gary Roloff, Michigan State University; Michael Donovan, Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Northern hardwood forests cover > 2 million ha in Michigan and are managed for ecological and timber values. The mammal community of these forest systems provides important ecological and recreational functions. As part of a long-term study on forest regeneration techniques and wildlife interactions, we deployed an unbaited 25-camera grid (1 camera every 0.49 ha) across a 12 ha hardwood site in the Upper Peninsula, Michigan. We collected data from May 2017 through June 2018. We tagged photos to species and used standard photo verification processes. We documented a wide functional range of mammals, including small mammals (deer mice, flying squirrels), mesocarnivores (marten, fisher, bobcat, coyote), and larger herbivores (deer) and a carnivore (wolves). We quantified number of cameras needed to reliably detect white-tailed deer, snowshoe hare, black bear, and marten. We report on amount of sampling needed to represent detectable mammal species using relatively localized areas in managed northern hardwood forests in Michigan.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

10:40am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: POLICY & ENGAGEMENT) What Should a Baccalaureate Program in Conservation Law Enforcement Emphasize?
AUTHORS: Michael Rader, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: Law enforcement is critical to natural resource protection and conservation. Increasingly, the job duties of a conservation law enforcement (CLE) officer have been expanding and getting more complex as natural resource agencies interact with an increasing number of non-traditional stakeholders and issues. Many colleges and universities now offer baccalaureate programs in conservation law enforcement, but it has been 30 years since research has examined what curricular components to emphasize in such a program. This study surveyed all full-time, non-probationary conservation wardens in the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to determine their opinions on probationary officer strengths & weaknesses, preparedness for entry-level training, relative importance of academic subject areas, relative importance of modes of instruction, and officer demographics. Results (65% response rate; n = 108) indicated that probationary officers were weakest in CLE field techniques, written communication, and natural resource law and policy; officers were strongest in technology/computer applications, physical fitness and basic law enforcement skills; the top three skills to develop in a baccalaureate program were CLE field techniques, natural resource sciences, and basic law enforcement skills. Specific courses rated extremely/very important included oral/written communication, CLE fundamentals/field skills, criminal justice investigation, law enforcement academy, resource policy and law, English, human dimensions, internship, and natural resource field skills. Courses rated relatively low in importance included philosophy, economics, arts, history, and math/statistics. The top three instructional methods were practical exercises/application, role playing/scenarios, and case studies. Observations about how to incorporate the results into a CLE baccalaureate curriculum are made as are recommendations for future research.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-07) Assessing Walleye Habitat Use with Species Distribution Models
AUTHORS: Andrew Carlson, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: The science of evaluating species distributions against environmental conditions has advanced tremendously in the past decade following technological improvements in tagging and monitoring systems. Using data collected from acoustically tagged adult Walleye, generalized linear mixed models were developed to predict the probability of occurrence at depth given temperature and oxygen within stratified lakes. Following, using data from a survey-specific temperature and oxygen profile, the relative odds of occurrence for Walleye was calculated throughout the water column and at the depths of the gillnet sites. Comparisons between modeled probability of occurrence and observed catch rates at specific sites were made to evaluate the degree to which site-level patterns can be explained by the habitat sampled. Integrating and accounting for known measures of environmental variability that systematically influence catch statistics will improve the quality and subsequent interpretation fisheries data to support management decisions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-08) Synthesizing the Science to Support Management of Invasive Plants
AUTHORS: Kurt P. Kowalski, U.S. Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: The invasion of non-native wetland plants is one of the many stressors degrading Lake Erie and surrounding watersheds. Once established, invasive plants often outcompete native plants, impair fish and wildlife habitat, degrade recreational opportunities, increase fire hazard, and reduce property values. Resource managers and regional funding agencies (e.g., the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative) invest a significant amount of resources to address this high priority issue. However, the conventional approaches to invasive plant management (e.g., herbicide, cutting, burning, flooding) often only provide temporary control, are difficult to maintain at the landscape scale, and are not species specific. Efforts to collaborate on a local scale (e.g., Cooperative Weed Management Areas) and at the basin-wide scale (e.g., Great Lakes Phragmites Collaborative, Phragmites Adaptive Management Framework) are maximizing the impact of investments, but additional management options are desired by resource managers. Phragmites australis, Typha spp., Butomus umbellatus, Phalaris arundinacea, Hydrocharis morsus-ranae, Hydrilla verticillata, and Myriophyllum spicatum are just a few of the many non-native plant species found in Lake Erie coastal habitats. Although all of these species are being managed at some level, a few widespread species (e.g., Phragmites) are very visible, of great concern to private and public landowners, and targeted for intensive research efforts into new management approaches that can be adapted to the other species. For example, recent advances have revealed the extensive suite of microbes (e.g., bacteria, fungi) that live symbiotically in and around non-native Phragmites. The relationship between microbes and the plant can enhance the plant’s ability to outcompete native plants and is a target for new control approaches (e.g., disrupting important mutualisms). Ongoing research focused on Phragmites is laying the groundwork for application to other undesirable non-native plants and enhancing the growth of desirable native or crop species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-09) Movement and Survival of Bighead Carp Exposed to a Carbon Dioxide Deterrent Barrier
AUTHORS: David L. Smith, Aaron Cupp, Christa Woodley, Aaron Urbanczyk – U.S. Army Engineer R&D Center

ABSTRACT: In the United States the Asian carps threaten the Great Lakes via the Illinois Waterway.  The United States Army Corps of Engineers and partners are investigating the use of carbon dioxide   based deterrence barrier.  Carbon dioxide acts as an anesthetic that leads to immobilization and death in fishes.  We have been developing carbon dioxide response rules for Bighead carp  (Hypophthalmichthys nobilis) in a laboratory.  We are applying those rules in a hydrochemodynamic numerical model representing a carbon dioxide barrier at Brandon Road Lock and Dam, a component of the Illinois Waterway.  We explore fish response to the carbon dioxide barrier using a fish movement model.  In the model we implemented rules driven by variable water velocities and carbon dioxide concentrations and produced a movement track.  We measured fish numbers that that would 1) leave the barrier in the downstream direction, 2) become immobilized, and 3) successfully pass the barrier.   The results suggest that a carbon dioxide barrier is another fish deterrence technology that has applicability in the management of invasive species.  However, additional research and development is required to better understand fish response to carbon dioxide gradients and cost of deploying an operational barrier. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:00am

(SYMPOSIA-10) Timber Rattlesnake Habitat Use: A Thermal Landscape Perspective
AUTHORS: William Peterman, Andrew Hoffman, Annalee Tutterow – Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Temperature is of paramount consideration for ectothermic animals. Numerous studies have previously described multiscale habitat selection and use in timber rattlesnakes (Crotalus horridus). However, there is currently limited understanding of how habitat use and selection are related to the thermal landscape. The primary objectives of this study are to understand how the thermal landscape is affected by land use and forest management, and how spatial and temporal habitat use by timber rattlesnakes relates to the thermal landscape. To create a down-scaled near-surface air temperature model, we deployed remote temperature loggers across our focal landscape in Southeast Ohio. We then used fine-scale LiDAR data to derive spatial topographic surfaces as well as surfaces describing forest structure. Using these models, we related the predicted spatial-temporal air temperatures to field observations of radio telemetered snake locations, as well to snake body temperature data collected using internal temperature data loggers.Our near-surface air temperature and snake body temperature models both fit the data well with high predictive power. Unsurprisingly, we found that gravid females, on average, occupied areas of the landscape with higher temperatures than non-gravid snakes. We have observed large differences in parturition dates in our population. Females that give birth earlier in the summer are occupying areas that are warmer than areas occupied by females that give birth later in the summer. Our study provides a novel perspective of habitat use in timber rattlesnakes, and adds to the limited knowledge of timber rattlesnake ecology in the Midwest. A clear understanding of the landscape features affecting near-surface air temperatures and the spatial thermal ecology of timber rattlesnake has the potential to facilitate more effective and targeted habitat management.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:00am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 2) You Can't Just Use Gold: The Effects of Elevated Algal and Sedimentary Turbidity on Lure Success for Walleye (Sander vitreus)
AUTHORS: Chelsey L. Nieman, Suzanne M. Gray – The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Increasing anthropogenic turbidity changes underwater visual environments, leading to altered perception of visual cues. This alteration may have a variety of consequences, such as movement to other localities, a shift in diet or preferred prey, and reduced consumption of prey items. Lures are known to be perceived by fish as a potential prey item, therefore lure color/type can be utilized as a relative proxy for prey items that fish are capable of visually perceiving in turbid water. The objective of this study was to understand how shifts in visual environments may influence predatory success of Walleye (Sander vitreus) in Lake Erie using both local knowledge of altered fishing practices as well as lure success. Charter boat captains on Lake Erie are experienced in fishing in and around algal blooms and as such their knowledge and real-time lure success data allowed us to monitor color of lures that were successful in attracting Walleye under differing conditions. A survey of Lake Erie charter captains (N=37, 38% response rate) was used to determine how altered water quality (i.e. algal blooms) affected fishing practices and lure usage over the long term, with results indicating that lure color success changed in highly turbid water. Additionally, a mobile phone application, Walleye Tracker, was used by 19 charter captains over two years to gather real time data on lure successes. The use of photographs of lures and water conditions allowed for quantitative, in situ, analysis of lure successes in differing water clarity conditions. The results of this study indicate that increases in both sedimentary and algal turbidity that are altering the underwater visual environment are not only changing visual perceptions of Walleye, but also indicate that this is likely to have long-term consequences, not only for the ecosystem, but also for recreational anglers within these altered systems.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

11:00am

(FISHERIES: LAKES & RESERVOIRS) Active Bluegill Management for Improved Angling Quality: Walnut Point Lake a Case Study in Central Illinois
AUTHORS: Michael Mounce, Division of Fisheries, Illinois Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Anglers want quality fishing opportunities and a growing body of literature indicates that active bluegill management can maintain or increase angling quality in bluegill fisheries. Panfish anglers are a very important part of the angling community, but often ignored in developing quality fisheries due to stereotyped as being primarily harvest-oriented. In 1999, as part of a state-wide bluegill management study, a 203 mm minimum length limit and 10 bluegill/day harvest limit were applied to Walnut Point Lake (21 ha). Initial results looked promising, but bluegill soon stockpiled below the minimum length limit, which is typical in fish populations with good recruitment and average growth. In 2007, a maximum length limit was applied allowing the harvest of 15 bluegill/day, of which, only 5 could be > 203 mm. Age structure and the number of large bluegill collected improved. In 2013, concerns regarding body condition and potentially growth prompted liberalization of the limit to 20 bluegill/day (still allowing 5 fish > 203 mm). Body condition and the number of large bluegill collected improved. Under the maximum length limit the average proportion of large bluegill (> 203 mm) collected in surveys is significantly higher (P< 0.02) than in pre-regulation years (< 1999). The application and tailoring of this regulation, coupled with angler education, has demonstrated biological and sociological benefits in this bluegill fishery for eleven consecutive years. Resource-appropriate regulations, similarly tailored, could provide long-term angling quality benefits in other bluegill and panfish fisheries while maintaining harvest opportunities.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:00am

(FISHERIES: INVERTEBRATES) Comparisons of Enzymatic Thermal Optima Among Native and Invasive Crayfish Species
AUTHORS: Hisham Abdelrahman, James Stoeckel – School of Fisheries, Aquaculture, and Aquatic Sciences, Auburn University; Jacob Westhoff, Missouri Department of Conservation

ABSTRACT: Previous researchers have shown that extraregional invasive crayfish possess certain life-history and ecological traits that facilitate their ability to successfully invade large areas in distant regions, whereas extralimital invaders tend to remain localized and occupy smaller ranges.  Physiological traits may provide additional explanatory power for realized and potential range of crayfish species. In this study, we tested for thermal performance differences related to respiratory physiology among multiple crayfish species with narrow to broad native and invasive ranges. We hypothesized that species with broad ranges would be thermal generalists relative to species confined to limited ranges. To test this hypothesis, we generated thermal performance curves of respiratory enzymes in the electron transport system (ETS) for 12 individuals from each of five species. Optimal thermal range was defined as the temperature range within which ETS enzyme activity was within 10% of the maximum observed value.  Contrary to our original hypothesis, optimal thermal range of respiratory enzymes was not correlated with geographic range, but was lowest in the most widespread species (Procambarus clarkii) which was also the only species with a strong propensity to burrow.  We also found that the two extraregional invaders (Faxonius virilis and P. clarkii) had significantly lower enzymatic activity levels at optimal temperatures than did the extralimital invader (F. neglectus) or the two native species with restricted ranges (F. eupunctus and F. marchandi).  Results thus far suggest that enzymatic thermal breadth may be more closely tied to habitat plasticity whereas enzyme activity level may be a more useful predictor of geographic range. Additional species are currently being analyzed to better assess the robustness of these conclusions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:00am

(WILDLIFE: MAMMALS) Using Stable Isotope Analysis to Evaluate the Diet of the North American River Otter Throughout Ohio
AUTHORS: Sara Adamczak, The Ohio State University; Anne Wiley, The University of Akron; Mažeika Sullivan, The Ohio State University; Stanley Gehrt, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis) is an apex riverine predator that is adapted to hunting in the water. This lifestyle results in a diet focused on aquatic and semi-aquatic species.  We sought to determine river otter diet composition and trophic level using stable isotope analysis. Understanding diet and trophic level provides insight into how river otters might influence community dynamics and potentially reveal important prey species for river otters in various riverine systems. We collected tissue, whisker and nail samples collected from 108 river otters across Ohio during 2017-2018. We used these samples to estimate the ratios d<sup>15</sup>N and d<sup>13</sup>C, comparing river otter values to those of potential prey items. The d<sup>15</sup>N measurements serve as indicators of a consumer's trophic level, whereas d<sup>13</sup>C values are used to determine carbon sources in a trophic network. Our preliminary analyses revealed a higher d<sup>15</sup>N for males (mean = 14.58) than females (mean = 13.97), suggesting that male otters tend to feed at a slightly higher trophic level than female river otters. The trophic level of juvenile river otters (15N = 14.02) was the same as adults (= 2 years old; d<sup>15</sup>N = 14.01); possibly a result of juveniles mostly feeding from their mothers until weaning. Yearling river otters (1-2 years old) appeared to feed at a higher trophic level than adults. This age difference may be a result of younger individuals feeding at multiple trophic levels compared to adults. The feeding habits of younger individuals, and consequently their trophic level, will often change over time. Perch, sunfish, and crayfish were found the preferred prey species across all otter age classes. These results support the idea of stable isotopes as a useful tool when examining river otter ecology, providing insight on river otter dietary sources, as well as their trophic positioning.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:00am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: POLICY & ENGAGEMENT) Volunteer Stream Quality Monitoring: Fostering Community Engagement in Ohio’s Scenic Rivers
AUTHORS: Robert Gable, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Scenic Rivers Program Manager ABSTRACT: For over 50 years, the Ohio Scenic Rivers Program has had great success partnering with local communities, landowners, government agencies, conservation organizations, businesses and individuals in the protection of fourteen of the state’s outstanding river ecosystems. Conservation goals have been achieved through public outreach and education, implementation of innovative conservation measures, enhancing recreational opportunities, and emphasis on the protection of sensitive areas critical to high-quality stream ecosystems. One of the most important tools to the success of the Scenic Rivers Program has been education and outreach through the Volunteer Stream Quality Monitoring (SQM) Project. SQM focuses on the basic study of aquatic macroinvertebrate communities in Ohio’s fourteen designated state wild, scenic and recreational rivers to evaluate overall stream health. Introducing individuals to their first crayfish, mayfly or leech sparks an interest in the stream ecosystem. Participants become empowered with information and understanding; qualities that drive advocacy and conservation action. Since the inception of the Volunteer SQM Project in 1983, more than 150,000 individuals and groups have monitored over 150 locations in Ohio’s wild, scenic and recreational rivers. In 2017 alone, the Scenic Rivers Program had over 7,600 individuals participate state wide creating an integral component to the overall success of the Ohio Scenic Rivers Program. Sharing the methods behind our success may be valuable to other conservation organizations looking to grow voices for their waterways and support for conservation of high-quality river and stream resources.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-07) From the Boat to the Board Room: Communicating Lake Erie Walleye Movements and Population Dynamics to Decision Makers and the Public
AUTHORS: Christopher Vandergoot, US Geological Survey; Matthew Faust,Ohio Department of Natural Resources; Jason Robinson, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; Andy Cook, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry; Tom MacDougall, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry; Charles Krueger, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Walleye support important commercial and recreational fisheries throughout Lake Erie.  To manage this fishery sustainably, a thorough understanding of the underlying biological and ecological processes regulating population dynamics is essential.  Recently, numerous acoustic telemetry studies have been undertaken to address key management uncertainties associated with movement patterns, spawning ecology and phenology, stock contributions, habitat use, and population dynamics. While these studies have resulted in an unprecedented amount of information, challenges ranging from determining best tagging practices, maintaining receiver networks, managing and analyzing large datasets, and communicating research findings to managers and constituents have occurred along the way.  This presentation will provide an overview of past and current Lake Erie walleye acoustic telemetry projects and summarize management uncertainties addressed to date.  Additionally, how results from completed and ongoing studies could be incorporated into current stock assessment practices will be presented.  Lastly, we’ll discuss how biologists and researchers communicate these scientific findings to a diversity of audiences, from fishery managers to resource users.        

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-08) Great Black Swamp Region of Northwestern Ohio
AUTHORS: Matthew Kovach, Tara Baranowski – The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: Ohio has lost over 90% of its wetlands with the majority of that loss occurring in the Great Black Swamp region of northwestern Ohio. The Nature Conservancy and many other partners are working to restore this important habitat. The restoration of wetland plant communities differs based upon the site specific conditions present: Hydrological reconnection types and regimes, Lake Erie water level fluctuations, native sediment loss and alteration, watershed dynamics and historical landscape alterations, climate change implications, coastal erosional processes, and wetland mitigation. This work also varies based upon the ultimate goals of the restoration. This presentation will discuss how all of those factors play into The Nature Conservancy’s work to restore and create native wetland plant communities and the benefits and tradeoffs associated with that work.   

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-09) The Use of Carbon Dioxide to Remove Resident Piscivorous Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) from the Tracy Fish Collection Facility in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, California
AUTHORS: Brandon J. Wu, Rene C. Reyes, Christopher L. Hart – U.S. Bureau of Reclamation; Kevin K. Kumagai, HTI-VEMCO USA, Inc.; Scott A. Porter, Michael R. Trask – U.S. Bureau of Reclamation

ABSTRACT: As an integral part of the Central Valley Project, the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), Tracy Fish Collection Facility (TFCF; Byron, California) functions to salvage fish from Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta water exported south by the C.W. “Bill” Jones Pumping Plant.  Predation by resident piscivorous fish is a contributing factor to fish loss at the TFCF and Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) are generally considered the most prevalent piscivorous fish species within the facility.  To improve fish salvage and meet requirements mandated by the most recent National Marine Fisheries Service Biological Opinion, Reclamation is investigating the use of carbon dioxide (CO<sub>2</sub>) as an anesthetic to remove predatory fish from the TFCF system.  The treatment of various water conveyance channels and components of the TFCF with CO<sub>2</sub> has demonstrated that elevated CO<sub>2 </sub>concentrations (50–350 mg/L) increase the number and size of Striped Bass in collection tanks (salvaged), suggesting that this application is feasible and effective.  In addition, acoustically tagged Striped Bass appeared to exhibit an avoidance response to elevated CO<sub>2</sub> concentrations.  The removal of acoustically tagged and wild Striped Bass during CO<sub>2</sub> treatment allowed for calculation of removal efficiency as well as estimation of Striped Bass population within the TFCF system at the time of testing.  Efforts are currently underway to estimate optimal CO<sub>2</sub> concentration for removal of Striped Bass based on removal efficiency and 96-hour post treatment survival.  Preliminary results suggest that the optimal CO<sub>2</sub> concentration for Striped Bass removal is approximately 165 mg/L.  Future efforts will focus on increasing removal efficiency in TFCF collection tanks as well as developing methods to direct piscivorous fish out of the facility to a location where there is no impact on salvageable fish.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:20am

(SYMPOSIA-10) Look at 7 Years of Bat Acoustic Surveys in Ohio
AUTHORS: Bridget K.G. Brown, Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: White-nose Syndrome (WNS) was discovered in the United States in New York in 2006. It slowly made its way across the country and was found in Ohio in 2011. Substantial declines were reported starting in 2012 in Ohio's two largest hibernacula, the Preble and Lawrence County mines. However, there was little information on the impact WNS was having on Ohio’s summer populations. In order to determine this, the Ohio Division of Wildlife instigated a mobile bat acoustic survey. The goal of this project was to noninvasively monitor the summer bat populations in Ohio and determine the negative effects (e.g. population declines and loss of species diversity) that WNS may be having statewide. This program has grown to include 44 acoustic routes with over 100 volunteers assisting. Survey results were compared annually to monitor changes in bat abundance along each route. There was evidence of declines, although not statistically significant, in state bat abundance overall from 2011 to 2017. This is likely as a result of WNS in combination with other various threats to bats (e.g. wind turbines and habitat loss). There was a significant increase in abundance between 2014 and 2017 (p=.014050). Increases from 2014 could represent beginning recoveries in Ohio’s bat populations or a change in species composition across the post-WNS landscape. Continuing this project into the future could allow for further understanding of the status of Ohio's bat populations.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:20am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 2) Smallmouth Bass Population Characteristics in Chequamegon Bay, Lake Superior Under a Unique 22-inch Size Limit
AUTHORS: Dray Carl, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Minimum length limits are the most commonly used regulation for protecting, enhancing, or manipulating black bass recreational fisheries, and most limits are generally set at appropriate lengths to provide harvest opportunities of larger individuals. However, in 1994, growth overfishing and angler outcry led fishery managers from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) to enact a 22-inch (559-mm) minimum size restriction on Smallmouth Bass in Wisconsin waters of Lake Superior. This regulation has essentially created a complete catch-and-release fishery for Smallmouth Bass, as no bass greater than 559 mm have been sampled in the field or observed in creel surveys during the 24-year period. Within Wisconsin waters of Lake Superior, Smallmouth Bass are largely localized to Chequamegon Bay, a 13,750-ha shallow (mean depth 8.5-m) embayment adjacent the Apostle Islands. I used time series data from standardized gillnet samples (3600’, graded mesh) and annual hook-and-line sampling to evaluate trends in population dynamics before and after the regulation change. I also evaluated Smallmouth Bass seasonal movement patterns in Chequamegon Bay using floy tag recapture histories. Immediately following the regulation, Smallmouth Bass size structure and abundance increased dramatically, presumably due to a large decrease in mortality. Overall, annual mortality is now 2.5 times lower than before the regulation change. However, growth remained constant throughout the time series data, suggesting adequate resources to support increased abundance of Smallmouth Bass in Chequamegon Bay. Results from this study provide an example of Smallmouth Bass population dynamic rates from a population suited for a “trophy” minimum length limit, information for adaptive management of Smallmouth Bass in northern climates, and numerous new questions for additional research. Potential community-level effects of increased Smallmouth Bass abundance in combination with an overall warming Lake Superior should be investigated.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM A

11:20am

(FISHERIES: LAKES & RESERVOIRS) Evaluating Growth of Angled Bluegill Relative to the Randomly Sampled Population
AUTHORS: Ben C. Neely, Jeff D. Koch, Connor J. Chance-Ossowski – Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism

ABSTRACT: Bluegill Lepomis macrochirus contribute to unique fisheries in Kansas where they fill many niches. One niche that has been gaining recent attention from anglers is pursuit of large individuals. These efforts typically occur during the Bluegill spawn in May and June when anglers can visually target nest-guarding fish. A combination of being visually evident and aggressively defending nests makes Bluegill especially susceptible to angler harvest during this time. There is concern that harvest of nest-tending Bluegill may remove the fastest growing individuals from the population and ultimately results in populations that do not support quality Bluegill fisheries. To this end, Bluegill were sampled from 14 Kansas impoundments with both fall electrofishing at random shoreline locations and spring angling for nest-tending individuals in 2017 and 2018. Total length was recorded from all captured individuals and otoliths were collected from up to five individuals per centimeter group for age and growth estimation. In all impoundments, length distribution of sampled bluegill differed between gears with angled fish shifted toward larger individuals. Similarly, angled fish exhibited more rapid growth than randomly sampled individuals in some populations. These results highlight the vulnerability of the fastest growing individuals in bluegill populations to angler harvest while preparing and guarding spawning sites. Further, these results suggest that instituting some level of protection to nest-guarding Bluegill might result in increased size structure and promote development and maintenance of quality Bluegill fisheries.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:20am

(FISHERIES: INVERTEBRATES) Abiotic and Biotic Factors Relating to Mermithid Infection Rates in Larval Midge (Chironomidae) Specimens in Northwestern Wisconsin Streams
AUTHORS: Macayla Greider, Jeffrey Dimick – Aquatic Biomonitoring Laboratory, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Dr. Justin VanDeHey, Dr. Shelli Dubay – College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT: Mermithid nematodes are generally considered as biological control agents for pest species like Anopheles, but also may influence Trout (Salmonidae) food sources because they cause reproductive failure and mortality in both midge (Chironomidae) larvae and mayfly (Ephemeroptera) nymphs.  However, much remains unknown about the mermithid life cycle and factors affecting their distribution. Our objectives were to determine if the prevalence of mermithid infections differed (1) between hosts with different feeding strategies, (2) in streams with different macroinvertebrate and fish communities, and (3) with stream flow rates. We hypothesized that (1) filter feeding midges would have higher prevalence of midge infection because filter-feeders passively ingest eggs whereas other midges seek out specific prey, (2) Trout streams would have fewer mermithids, and (3) stream flow would not be related to mermithid prevalence. Mermithid prevalence was assessed in samples collected from 48 streams during 2010-2014 from four northwestern Wisconsin counties. Infection was determined by observation of mermithids within midge bodies. Midges were identified to species to determine feeding behavior and distinguish filter feeders from non-filter feeders. Significantly lower proportions of mermithids were present in Trout streams than non-Trout streams, but no significant differences were present between mermithid presence and either HBI score or stream velocities. Chi-square analysis indicated no significant difference in prevalence between filter feeding and non-filter feeding groups; however, shredders had higher mermithid prevalence than other feeding groups. This research will provide insight into some aspects of mermithid life cycles and host selection.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:20am

(WILDLIFE: MAMMALS) Evaluating Survival and Cause-specific Mortality of Bobcats in West-central Illinois
AUTHORS: Edward. D. Davis, Western Illinois University; Tim C. Swearingen, Western Illinois University; Robert W. Klaver, U.S. Geological Survey; Christopher N. Jacques, Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Increased understanding of mortality of bobcats (Lynx rufus) is a prerequisite to successful management programs, particularly as it relates to population dynamics and the role of population models in adaptive species management. Survival and cause-specific mortality of bobcats have been well documented in predominantly forested landscapes, but limited information has been collected in agriculturally-dominated Midwestern landscapes. Thus, our objective was to evaluate survival and cause-specific mortality rates of bobcats across agriculturally dominated landscapes of west-central Illinois. We captured and radio-collared 38 (20 males, 18 females) bobcats from January 2016 to September 2018. We used known fate models with the logit link function in Program MARK to estimate annual survival of bobcats, which accommodated staggered entry and exit times of radiocollared bobcats during our analysis interval. Because mortality events were limited, covariate modeling was not conducted. Nevertheless, we constructed a survival model in which survival was constant (S{<sub>constant</sub>}) between years and across sexes. We documented 11 deaths during our study; vehicle collisions was the leading cause of mortality and accounted for 5 (45%) mortality events. We attributed remaining deaths to harvest (n = 3; [1 legal, 1 illegal, 1 incidental harvest]), unknown (n = 1), other (n = 1), and capture-related factors (n = 1); we censored capture-related deaths from analyses. The estimated annual survival rate using model S{<sub>constant</sub>} was 0.74 (95% CI = 0.55–0.87). Bobcat survival monitoring is ongoing through 2019 and will evaluate potential effects of intrinsic and habitat variables on seasonal and annual survival rates.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:20am

(HUMAN DIMENSIONS: POLICY & ENGAGEMENT) Investigating Perceptions of Wildlife and Vegetation in Urban Vacant Lots
AUTHORS: Andrew Mallinak, Charles Nilon, Robert Pierce – University of Missouri

ABSTRACT: Vacant lots are a prevalent issue in many urban, residential areas nationwide, causing property value declines and further neighborhood blight. These lots are often targeted by city officials to become planned greenspaces, though nearby, marginalized residents may not adequately be involved in the process. This exclusion disempowers residents and provides greenspace that while ecologically useful, may not benefit residents. St. Louis, Missouri is one of /many Midwest cities dealing with a large number of vacant lots, with most of the vacancy concentrated in the predominantly low-income, African-American north side. The city has selected several lots in two north side neighborhoods to implement various management strategies for storm water control and biodiversity conservation. To understand residents’ management preferences for the lots, I administered semi-structured interviews combined with vacant lot photo-evaluation surveys to residents in both neighborhoods. I created themes from the interview transcripts and photograph scores that explain how residents perceive the wildlife and vegetation in their neighborhood vacant lots and how that perception affects their preferred lot management and use. Top ranked photograph scenes exhibited a clear line of sight and signs of care such as mowing, fencing and litter absence. Bottom ranked photographs exhibited blocked line of sight and signs of neglect such as litter, patchy vegetation, and unmown or untrimmed vegetation. Themes surrounding management perception and preference included sense of safety, maintenance effort, and community needs. While wildlife was sometimes seen as tolerable or appreciated, most wildlife was viewed negatively as a form of nuisance or danger. Vegetation was pivotal in how residents felt an area was cared for and whether a vacant lot was seen as being safe and usable, with low, uniform vegetation preferred.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-07) Spawning Site Contribution and Movements of Lake Whitefish in Northwestern Lake Michigan
AUTHORS: Daniel Isermann, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit; Tom Binder, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University-Hammond Bay Biological Station; Scott Hansen, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; David Caroffino, Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Daniel Dembkowski, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit; Charles Krueger, Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University; Christopher Vandergoot, U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center, Lake Erie Biological Station; Wesley Larson, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit

ABSTRACT: Lake whitefish support important commercial and recreational fisheries on Lake Michigan, with the northern third of the lake supporting the majority of harvest. Previous genetic analyses indicated lake whitefish harvest in northwest Lake Michigan was largely supported (˜ 75%) by fish assigned to Big Bay de Noc (BBDN) and North and Moonlight bays (NMB) genetic stocks. Previous tagging suggested the BBDN stock spawned on reefs within BBDN and were usually recovered by the fishery in Green Bay north of Chambers Island or along the lake side of the Door Peninsula. Most fish from the NMB stock were thought to spawn on reefs along the lake side of Door Peninsula and the majority of tags were recovered along both sides of the Door Peninsula. While these previous studies suggested lake whitefish show relatively high spawning site fidelity, determining whether these two stocks are functionally discrete remains an important question for fishery managers. Additionally, lake whitefish assigning to multiple stocks now spawn in tributaries to Green Bay (primarily the Fox and Menominee rivers) where spawning had not been observed for nearly a century; the movements of these fish are largely unknown. We implanted acoustic transmitters in 400 lake whitefish at four different spawning locations (BBDN, NMB, Fox and Menominee rivers) during November 2017. Use of acoustic telemetry coupled with genomics will allow us to test current understanding of lake whitefish stock structure and describe stock-specific movements and spatial distribution relative to fishing effort. We will present preliminary results from the first year of our assessment.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-08) A Decade of Privately Owned Wetland Restorations in the Lake Erie Marsh Focus Area
AUTHORS: Jeff Finn, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Mark Witt, Ohio Division of Wildlife, Joe Uhinck, Ottawa County Soil and Water Conservation District

ABSTRACT: The wetland habitat of the Western Basin of Lake Erie has endured significant loss since the settlement of Europeans in the area. Some estimates put the loss at over 90%. The area is listed as a crucial element in the U.S. Shorebird Conservation Plan and significant in the Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes Joint Venture plans of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. The importance of coastal and interior wetlands has become increasingly apparent due to recent water quality issues within the Western Basin of Lake Erie. There are a variety of agencies and organizations that have been working together to restore wetlands within the Lake Erie Marsh Focus Area. Ohio Division of Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program, and Ottawa County Soil and Water Conservation District have worked together to create a cumulative effect that is transforming much of this area from farmed or degraded land, to productive wetland habitat. Accomplishments are often measured on an annual basis, taking a snapshot of what has occurred within a given year. The cumulative effect of restoration efforts is not readily apparent unless one takes the time to capture and quantify what each organization or agency has accomplished over a longer period of time. The most important factor may not be the influx of government agencies but the willingness of landowners to restore wetland habitat on privately owned land. What motivates each of these landowners can be vastly different. Monetary incentives, recreational opportunities like hunting and trapping, or simply having a conservation ethic to restore habitat are all drivers that motivate landowners to restore habitat.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:40am

(SYMPOSIA-10) Adaptive Variation in Venom Genes in Small Isolated Populations of Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes
AUTHORS: Alex Ochoa, Michael Broe, H. Lisle Gibbs – Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Small isolated populations of endangered species can experience genetic costs through the loss of adaptive variation and/or the accumulation of deleterious mutations through genetic drifts.  The endangered Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus) occurs in isolated populations with small effective sizes throughout its range in the U.S. and Canada, but little is known about the levels of adaptive genetic variation in existing populations.  Here, we used DNA capture probes and Next Generation Sequencing to assess the genetic diversity of venom genes in 93 Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes from 12 populations in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Illinois, and Ontario.  Specifically, we characterized the genetic diversity of genes encoding PLA2, BPP, CRISP, SVSP, and SVMP venom proteins, as well as an additional set of ~1400 non-toxin and neutral loci.  Within populations, we find that variation—defined as the presence of nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms in venom genes—is common and not related to effective population sizes, as determined from neutral genetic markers.  This suggests that small populations of this species still retain high levels of adaptive genetic variation despite the impact of strong genetic drift. In contrast, levels of population divergence in toxin and non-toxin loci are similar, thus making the roles of selection versus genetic drift in maintaining population differences in venom gene alleles uncertain.  Broadly, we discuss the implications of our results for management activities for this endangered snake from a conservation genetics perspective.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

11:40am

(FISHERIES: GREAT LAKES 2) Changes in Great Lakes Forage Species Abundance and Composition: 25 Years of Trawling on Lake St. Clair
AUTHORS: Jan-Michael Hessenauer, Andrew Briggs, Brad Utrup, Todd Wills – Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: The Laurentian Great Lakes have experienced substantial ecological change over the past 25 years in response to the invasion of non-native species, changes in nutrient fluxes, habitat degradation, and restoration initiatives.  Long term datasets provide a valuable tool to assess the scale of broad ecological change and make predictions about future change in response to perturbation.  The Michigan Department of Natural Resources Lake St. Clair Fisheries Research Station conducts annual spring trawl surveys on Lake St. Clair, using an 8.4 m headrope otter trawl with 0.95 cm codmesh. This survey is part of a continuous monitoring program occurring since 1993 with the goal of assessing the status of the lakes forage fish community and corresponds with the establishment and dominance of dreissenid mussels (first detected in 1986) and Round Goby Neogobius melanostomus (first detected in 1990).  Each spring an index site is trawled for three 10-minute tows.  Captured fish for each tow are graded through a 3.2 cm sorting mesh to separate forage sized individuals from the rest of the catch.  Forage was identified, counted and weighed, and a subset of up to 150 individuals per species were measured for total length to generate length frequency data.  Using these data, we calculated indices of abundance and diversity for the forage fish community and compare trends in these data over the time series.  These data provide useful management benchmarks against which the response to ecological perturbations have on the forage fish community of the Great Lakes.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

11:40am

(FISHERIES: LAKES & RESERVOIRS) Quantifying Fish Habitat Impairment in Iowa's Lakes and Reservoirs
AUTHORS: Erin Haws, Iowa Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Freshwater ecosystems provide a diverse and extensive supply of resources to fauna and flora living within, to surrounding ecosystems, and human economies. As bodies of water evolve, so do the methods used to protect and restore them. Over the past decade, emphasis on sustaining freshwater ecosystems has led to a large expansion in the development of protective policies and restoration programs aiming to improve aquatic habitat. A recurring challenge to fish habitat restoration lies in defining impairment factors, their scale and the rate at which they are occurring in a system. Comprehensive assessments are therefore needed to identify impairments, prioritize waterbodies in need of restoration, and provide improved methods to measure local fish habitat using feasible metrics. This study provides an expansive look into lake and reservoir fish habitat in Iowa based on a survey reporting on all significant publicly owned lakes recognized by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The survey asked Iowa DNR Fisheries Biologists to report the degree of impairment of a set of variables for each individual waterbody in their management area. Multivariate factors were classified using the methods of Krogman and Miranda (2016), characterizing twelve broad constructs of fish habitat impairment. Study objectives include describing fish habitat impairment trends and identifying differences across lake type, watershed location, and status in the Lake Restoration Program. Future research plans aim to quantify relationships between fish habitat impairment constructs and measured water quality, physical, and biological parameters within existing datasets to evaluate the resources available to adequately measure fish habitat.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

11:40am

(FISHERIES: INVERTEBRATES) Evaluating Impacts of Rainbow Trout Farming on Macroinvertebrates in Neotropical Streams in Ecuador
AUTHORS: Dana G. Wessels, Biology Department, Grand Valley State University; Dr. Katherine Krynak, Department of Biological and Allied Health Sciences, Ohio Northern University; Dr. Ed Krynak, Department of Geography, Western University; Andrea Encalada, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador; Dr. Eric Snyder, Biology Department, Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT: Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) aquaculture has increased to accommodate growing human populations, but streams throughout the world are being adversely affected in the process. Understanding how stream ecosystems respond to trout farm effluent is necessary to propose well-informed management practices before habitat and biotic loss become unrecoverable. Our research compared macroinvertebrate communities and environmental parameters along two streams in the Pichincha region of Ecuador; one stream with five non-native rainbow trout farms, and the other stream without trout farms. Macroinvertebrates collected in non-trout farm and headwater (control) sites were compared to those collected at the outflow of the five trout farms. An analysis of similarity based on the non-metric multidimensional scaling analyses (NMDS) of the macroinvertebrate families in qualitative kick samples as well as the EPT genera from the Surber samples showed a significant difference between the three sampling groups (Global R = 0.536, p = 0.004 and Global R = 0.639, p = 0.001 respectively). SIMPER analyses determined the families and genera that contributed the greatest proportion of dissimilarity between the trout farm, non-trout farm, and headwater groups. The Andean Biotic Index pollution tolerance values and functional feeding groups of the most influential families were examined. AICc model selection and model averaging was used to evaluate potential environmental influence on macroinvertebrate community similarity. Model averaged parameter estimates of the interaction between specific conductivity (SC) and percent organic matter (OM) was predictive of the macroinvertebrate community differences between sampling sites from the kick samples. Our results indicated reduced water quality due to the effects of rainbow trout farm effluent. However, treatment methods are limited in this mountainous terrain. Therefore, we would suggest feeding efficiency and utilization of trout farm sludge as fertilizer to minimize the impact of these farms on the neotropical streams.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

12:00pm

AFS NCD Reservoir Technical Committee
Tuesday January 29, 2019 12:00pm - 1:00pm
TBD

12:00pm

Lunch Break on own
Tuesday January 29, 2019 12:00pm - 1:20pm
N/A

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Paddlefish Migration: Evidence to Support Need for Interjurisdictional Management
AUTHORS: Sara Tripp, Missouri Department of Conservation; Dr. Quinton Phelps, West Virginia University; David Herzog, Missouri Department of Conservation

ABSTRACT: The scale of policy required to effectively manage or restore species that cross jurisdictional boundaries is a critical component for sustainability across a species’ range. Many riverine fish species (i.e., Paddlefish) range far beyond state boundaries; which makes existing state-by state management strategies null when conservation and sustainability goals differ widely. Before management strategies can be implemented, quantifying movement patterns is necessary to determine the appropriate spatial scale for management. Prior information collected using tag return data, has shown long-range movements for Paddlefish, but the proportion of the population making these movements is often underestimated from this type of data. Because of this, we investigated broad scale movement patterns of Paddlefish in the Mississippi River using acoustic telemetry. With the increasing use of this technology, researchers throughout the Mississippi River Basin now have access to a stationary receiver array that spans from Minnesota down to Louisiana and includes all major tributaries and many other locations. Without, the sharing of data among states and agencies, this type of data collection and analysis is not feasible. After summarizing more than a million detections from over 200 Paddlefish implanted with transmitters throughout the Mississippi Rivers, the data suggests that over 50% of the paddlefish tagged are migratory and moving freely among rivers (e.g., Mississippi, Missouri, Illinois, and Ohio rivers) across many political boundaries and encompassing multiple regulatory agencies. This type of information regarding spatial bounds is now being incorporated with population demographic information to develop a basin wide management plan that could be implemented in portions of the Paddlefish range.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Waterfowl Ecology and Management in the Lower Great Lakes
AUTHORS: Matthew Palumbo, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Jacob Straub, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, David Luukkonen, Michigan State University; John Coluccy, Ducks Unlimited

ABSTRACT: Abstract: Applied scientific research has been an underpinning of sound waterfowl and wetland conservation for decades. The Lower Great Lakes (LGL), especially wetland and adjacent upland habitats near Lakes Erie, St. Clair, and Ontario, were historically and remain a critical region for waterfowl of the Atlantic and Mississippi Flyways. In fact, hundreds of thousands of waterfowl use this landscape as their primary breeding location and millions use the resources of the region during migration between breeding and wintering areas. Waterfowl managers and researchers in the LGL have strong partnerships and have largely focused efforts in this region on studies that improve understanding of the overall ecology of the species and how management actions can influence these birds. Specifically, the LGL have been the home to seminal studies on waterfowl bioenergetic modeling during spring migration, habitat use and movement for key focal species (e.g., mallards), monitoring and evaluation of diving sea duck distributions on the Great Lakes, studying the potential limiting factors for Great Lakes mallard populations, and influence of weather, wetland availability, and mallard abundance on productivity of Great Lakes mallards. Importantly, these studies have critical linkages to management which have serviced wetlands conservation. Our objective is to synthesize recent research that has improved our understanding of waterfowl ecology and habitat management in the region. Additionally, we will identify future research needs and information gaps to expand waterfowl conservation in the LGL.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-09) Effects of Sociability and Conspecifics on CO2 Avoidance in Fish
AUTHORS: Emily K. Tucker, Cory D. Suski – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT: Carbon dioxide (CO<sub>2</sub>) has been proposed as a non-physical deterrent to prevent the movement of fishes in freshwater systems. Previous studies have shown that fish of different species tend to avoid CO<sub>2</sub> at 50,000-75,000 µatm, but there is also wide variation between individual fish in the amount of CO<sub>2</sub> required to elicit avoidance. In many of these previous studies, fish were tested for CO<sub>2</sub> avoidance individually. Many fish species, including bigheaded carp, are frequently found in groups, and it is not known if the response of groups of fish to CO<sub>2</sub> exposure is consistent with the response of individuals. Therefore, the purpose of our study was to define CO<sub>2</sub> avoidance in fish that are part of a social group relative to when tested individually. Bluegill were first tested individually in a "shuttle box" choice assay, to define their initial avoidance threshold. All bluegill were then assigned to groups for a social network assay to determine the social personality type of each fish. Finally, each social group was tested together in the shuttle box to define the CO<sub>2</sub> avoidance threshold of the group. Results indicate that fish in a social group that are exposed to CO<sub>2</sub> will shuttle at an average of 6 times lower partial pressures of CO<sub>2</sub> (pCO<sub>2</sub>) than fish tested individually, and that fish in groups had significantly less individual variation in CO<sub>2</sub> avoidance thresholds than fish that were not in groups. However, social personality type was not associated with shuttling behavior. Our results indicate that individual variation in CO<sub>2</sub> avoidance is greatly reduced when fish are in social groups. This has important implications for the use of CO<sub>2</sub> in fisheries management, as less CO<sub>2</sub> might be needed to deter groups of fish relative to deterring individuals.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-10) The Ohio Dragonfly Survey: Citizen Science and INaturalist
AUTHORS: MaLisa Spring, Norman Johnson – The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Dragonflies and damselflies are predatory arthropods that are reliant on aquatic habitats in both their immature and adult forms. Ohio is home to 170 species of dragonflies and damselflies. Of these, 23 are state-listed as endangered, threatened, or species of concern. The Ohio Dragonfly Survey is a citizen-science group documenting all species across the state to get a better understanding of the current distribution patterns and phenology. Thanks to the help of dedicated naturalists, we compiled over new 30,000 records in iNaturalist to incorporate into the survey. To date, 806 different users have contributed data via iNaturalist. Of these, 42 individuals contributed at least 100 observations to the survey. Odonata experts verify these observations, and a majority of the observations have reached research grade. Hundreds of new county records have been reported which have significantly expanded the known distribution of several species (Dythemis velox, Enallagma traviatum westfalli, Libellula incesta). Many species are still poorly documented, with several known from only a single county in Ohio: Aeshna interrupta, Calopteryx angustipennis, Enallagma anna, Enallagma doubledayi, Erithrodiplax miniscula, Hylogomphus abbreviatus, Leucorrhinia proxima, Libellula flavida, Somatochlora incurvata, Somatochlora kennedyi, and Tramea calverti.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Effects of Cyanobacteria on Quagga Mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) Reproduction
AUTHORS: Kishore Gopalakrishnan, Donna Kashian, Anna Boegehold, Nick Johnson – Wayne State University

ABSTRACT: Dreissenid mussels are successful invaders in a wide variety of freshwater environments. As biofoulers, they create serious economic and recreational problems. In addition, these rapid filter feeders alter their invaded ecosystem by disrupting the entire food web. Their rapid colonization rate and environmental resilience make them difficult to control. Many management options have been explored for combating the spread of dreissenid mussels, but an effective management strategy is elusive.  In an effort to identify a novel management tool, we investigated the impacts of cyanobacteria, commonly associated with Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs), on reproduction in dreissenid mussels. Mussel populations may be regulated by HABs through several reproductive mechanisms including spawning and fertilization. Specifically we tested the impacts of several bloom forming cyanobacterial species on quagga mussel reproduction through a series of bioassays examining quagga mussels’ spawning, fertilization and sperm motility. Mussel were induced to spawn using serotonin, then the effect of five cyanobacterial species spawning and sperm motility was examined. Sperm motility was determined by recording the movement of sperm from five males per treatment at 400X, tracking velocity and distance travelled. Fertilization success was determined through assays combining quagga mussels’ egg and sperm in individual vials containing cyanobacteria species cultures (n=5), and enumerating zygote formation marked by cellular cleavage. Some cyanobacteria species inhibited reproductive endpoints; spawning was inhibited by Microcystis wesenbergii and M. ichthyoblabe, sperm motility was reduced by Aphanizomenon flos-aquae and two strains of M.aeruginosa and fertilization ratio decreased with exposure to five unique species of cyanobacteria including two strains of M. aeruginosa. These results show the HABs may negatively impact dreissenid populations. Determining the class of compounds and understanding the mechanism by which the cyanobacteria disrupts reproduction may inspire new dreissenid control tactics.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) What Makes for a Good Restoration Project
AUTHORS: Devin Schenk, The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: There is a lot of interest and effort spent on stream and wetland restoration across the nation. Restoring these aquatic systems is widely recognized as a positive countermeasure to past landuse impacts and degradation; however, research has found that restoration failures are pervasive. It is therefore critical for practitioners, land managers, grantors, and decision-makers to be able to recognize the common challenges associated with stream and wetland restoration and what a successful project looks like. This talk will take a categorical stroll through the restoration landscape providing insight into ,what to look for in determining the goals of a restoration project, assessing a site’s restoration potential, evaluating its design, and measuring its success.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) Connecting Communities to Applied Science Across the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network
AUTHORS: Chiara Zuccarino-Crowe, Michigan Sea Grant

ABSTRACT: The Great Lakes Sea Grant Network plays a central role in supplying partners and communities with applied solutions and the science-based information needed to better understand, manage and conserve Great Lakes resources. Operating across eight Sea Grant programs, the network focuses on healthy coastal ecosystems, sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, resilient communities and economies, and environmental literacy. Sea Grant’s unique partnerships between state universities and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) allows for collaborative programming that resonates with a diverse suite of stakeholders. This overview will serve as an introduction to the regional network, demonstrate connection mechanisms, and inspire innovative partnerships to better serve end users of Great Lakes science.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:20pm

(FISHERIES: EARLY LIFE HISTORY) Effects of Winter Stream Habitat Conditions on Larval Brook Trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) Morphology at Swim up in Northern Michigan Streams
AUTHORS: Eric Miltz-Miller, Dr. Jill B.K. Leonard – Northern Michigan University

ABSTRACT: Several species of larval stream salmonids dwell in winter stream conditions from spawning through their early larval stages, yet relatively little is known about the effect of winter habitat variability on these fish. Three Northern Michigan streams were selected based on winter conditions: No ice (stable/unfrozen), dynamic/intermittent ice formation, or constant ice throughout the winter (stable/frozen). Streams had two study sites, each with two artificial redds, two incubation boxes, and two natural redds. Wild brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) were field spawned and the resulting embryos stocked into artificial redds/boxes in the stream from which the parent fish originated. Larvae were collected at swim up and evaluated for stage/morphology. Our results show that embryos transplanted to non-natal stream sites, with lower average winter temperatures than their natal streams, resulted in longer intra-gravel periods, and larvae swam up at a less developed stage than in their natal sites. These results are important since all the streams in the study are currently managed as a single population, yet considerable variability in larval characteristics was generated by small-scale winter habitat variability.  Further, these results allow us to consider effects on brook trout of predicted climate changes in small streams based on winter conditions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

1:20pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 1) Impacts of Neonicotinoids on Native Pollinators: Evaluating Wild Bee Guilds in Field-margins Surrounding Imidacloprid-treated Soybean Fields
AUTHORS: Anson R. Main, School of Natural Resources, University of Missouri; Elisabeth B. Webb, U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Keith W. Goyne, School of Natural Resources, University of Missouri; Robert Abney, School of Natural Resources, University of MIssouri; Doreen Mengel, Missouri Department of Conservation

ABSTRACT: Unlike honeybees, numerous wild bee species nest belowground and in close proximity to cultivated fields and adjacent flowering field-margins. Although agricultural field-margins can serve as important bee foraging habitat, these areas may also accumulate neonicotinoid insecticides via runoff events and planter dust. Few field studies have evaluated neonicotinoid impacts on wild pollinator communities, including solitary, ground-nesting bees (e.g., sweat bees, longhorn bees). To assess effects of neonicotinoid exposure on native bee floral (diet specialization) and nesting guilds (e.g., soil, cavity), we sampled 30 soybean fields on five conservation areas in north-central Missouri from pre-seeding through harvest in 2017. Following baseline data collection in 2016, soybean fields were cultivated using one of three treatments: imidacloprid-treated fields (n=10); untreated fields (n=10); and previously treated (2016) to untreated fields (n=10). At each site, we collected field and field-margin soils, flower heads from wildflowers and soybean plants, and native pollinators every 28 days over five sampling periods (pre-seeding, post-seeding, growing, soybean flowering, and harvest). Neonicotinoid residues were detected in field soils during all sampling periods (frequency: pre-seeding, 7%; post-seeding, 33%; growing, 23%; soybean flowering, 53%; and, harvest, 33%). However, neonicotinoids were infrequently detected in margin soils (<8% frequency, overall) with no residues detected in flowers from field-margin or soybean plants. Overall, wild bee abundance was significantly less in fields with greater neonicotinoid concentrations (ß = -0.27 ± 0.09, P = 0.003) though this relationship became slightly positive over time (ß = 0.08 ± 0.02, P= <0.001). Soil-nesting bee richness was significantly greater in margins surrounding untreated fields compared to previously treated fields. Additionally, fewer floral diet specialist bees were collected in field-margins surrounding fields with greater soil concentrations. Here, we present our preliminary findings and discuss how this research improves our understanding of neonicotinoid seed-treatment use on non-target native pollinator communities within agroecosystems.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:20pm - 1:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Acoustic Telemetry and Management of Behaviorally Diverse Lake Sturgeon in the Huron-Erie Corridor
AUTHORS: Scott Colborne, Michigan State University; Darryl Hondorp, US Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center; Charles Krueger, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Effective management of fishes requires basic understanding of species movements and habitat use at biologically relevant spatial and temporal scales. Conceptualizing the spatial ecology of sturgeon species has proven challenging due to life history characteristics of these species such as long-life, intermittent spawning, and long-distance movements. Through the use of acoustic telemetry individuals can be tracked in aquatic environments over extended time periods and spatial distributions to document broad-scale patterns of habitat use and temporal variation across seasons and years. Within the Huron-Erie Corridor (HEC) of the Great Lakes, the habitat use of 283 Lake Sturgeon Acipenser fulvescens has been monitored 2011-2018 with 10-year tags (V16, Vemco Ltd.). The extensive spatial coverage of acoustic receivers in the HEC has made it possible to document movement patterns of adult lake sturgeon across multiple years to examine seasonal patterns of habitat use and movement between multiple habitat types within the region. Lake sturgeon were present throughout all riverine and lacustrine areas of the HEC but showed preference for Lake St. Clair over either Lake Huron or Lake Erie. In addition, movements differed between fish tagged in the St. Clair River vs. Detroit River from their Lake St. Clair overwintering areas just prior to the spring spawning period. Lake sturgeon activity within sections of both the Detroit and St. Clair rivers extended beyond the spawning period and included overwinter residence of some individuals. This research directly contributes to ongoing lake sturgeon management efforts in the HEC for sustainable populations, but also furthers knowledge about the general movement ecology of sturgeon applicable to populations in other regions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Recent Advancements in Our Understanding of Secretive Marshbirds in the Lower Great Lakes
AUTHORS: Brendan Shirkey, WInous Point Marsh Conservancy, Doug Tozier, Bird Studies Canada, Mike Monfils, Michigan Natural Features Inventory

ABSTRACT: Historically, wetland research and management in the lower Great Lakes region has focused on waterfowl given the vested human interest and continental significance of the area as migratory stopover habitat. Recently, additional research focused on secretive marshbirds (e.g., king rails, yellow rails, Virginia rails, sora, least bitterns and American bitters) has gained momentum. Unlike waterfowl populations that are at historically high levels, many secretive marshbird species have experienced significant population decline in the past several decades. However, due to the extremely limited amount of research and secretive nature of many of these bird species, population trend data is lacking and any understanding of habitat associations that might be causing population declines is nonexistent. Many state and federal agencies as well as NGO’s have begun to work collaboratively throughout the Great Lakes region to monitor secretive marshbird populations to fill some of these knowledge gaps. The objectives of this presentation are to: 1) summarize historical marshbird research in the region, 2) highlight recent research that has improved our understanding of secretive marshbirds in the region, and 3) identify future research and information needed to improve our conservation of secretive marshbirds in the lower Great Lakes region. We hope that a continued to effort to understand the life history and habitat associations of secretive marshbirds will ultimately lead to improved habitat management with the potential to benefit waterfowl and simultaneously other wetland-dependent birds and wildlife, including secretive marshbirds.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-09) Evaluation of Carbon Dioxide to Stimulate Emergence of Red Swamp Crayfish from Invaded Ponds
AUTHORS: Jim Stoeckel, Rebecca Tucker, Hisham Abdelrahman – Auburn University; Aaron Cupps, Ann Allert, Kim Fredricks – U.S. Geological Survey; Seth Herbst, Sara Thomas – Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Brian Roth, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Reduction of invasive crayfish is a major challenge facing natural resource managers.  We evaluated the ability of carbon dioxide to induce red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) to leave ponds, and the ability of terrestrial shelters to facilitate collection after emergence.  We placed 100 red swamp crayfish in ~14 x 14 m experimental ponds at Auburn University, Alabama.  Tanks equipped with regulators and diffusers were used to inject CO<sub>2</sub> into experimental ponds whereas control ponds received no CO<sub>2</sub>.  Silt fencing was installed around ponds such that the bottom 2 feet was folded on the ground to serve as shelter, whereas the upper foot was installed vertically on fence posts to serve as a barrier.  Carbon dioxide was elevated to =200 mg/L in experimental ponds while pH was depressed to ~5.5.  Dissolved oxygen remained > 5 mg/L.  Greater than 50% of crayfish emerged within 6 hours.  Of these, 95% remained in sheltered areas underneath the folded fencing. They did not burrow under the fencing and were easily collected.  When a small inflow of non-carbonated fresh water was provided to a pond to simulate an underwater spring, crayfish sought shelter within this small inflow area.  Only 6% exited the pond even though CO<sub>2</sub> quickly reached = 200 mg/L in the surrounding waters.  Results thus far show that carbon dioxide can cause a large proportion of crayfish to emerge from ponds and seek terrestrial shelter within a short time.  Small inflows of non-carbonated water from inlets or springs can provide refuges that may severely limit emergence.  However, if these refuge areas can be identified, they may facilitate removal via trapping or seining.  Results from an invaded retention-pond trial in Michigan are currently being analyzed and will also be presented.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-10) River Rearing of in Vitro Mussels
AUTHORS: Jacqualyn Halmbacher, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Transformation of larval mussels and grow out of juveniles to a releasable size requires knowledge of the correct host, inoculations with the larvae, growing algae as a food source, supplementing water with proper nutrients and the lengthy process of rearing freshwater mussel juveniles in a laboratory setting. In vitro transformation with grow out in a natural setting streamlines this process. In this study, several batches of juveniles from various species of mussels were placed in concrete river grow out "silos" immediately after being taken out of the in vitro incubator. Two river sites in Ohio were used: Big Darby Creek and the Kokosing River. Growth measurements were taken every two weeks. Transforming mussels using in vitro techniques followed by river rearing surpassed any laboratory growth rates known to date.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Full Lake Eradication of Quagga Mussels Using Low Doses of EarthTec QZ Ionic Copper
AUTHORS: David Hammond, Ph.D., Earth Science Laboratories, Inc.;Gavin Ferris, M.S., Solitude Lake Management, Inc.

ABSTRACT: In 2017 Earth Science Labs, Inc. designed and supervised a treatment protocol to eradicate invasive quagga mussels from the lake at Billmeyer Quarry in Pennsylvania.  The treatment consisted of 3 separate applications of a liquid formulation of ionic copper called EarthTec QZ, delivered over a period of 37 days.  Mussel mortality was determined through use of caged adult mussels that were suspended at different locations and depths throughout the lake.  Mussels began to die within 3 days of the initiation of treatment, particularly in the top 20 feet of the water body.  The death of the last caged mussel was confirmed 40 days after the initiation of treatment, in a cage that had been placed at a depth of 30 feet below the surface.  Both biological and physicochemical data collected during the treatment period revealed that there was a pronounced thermocline at 25-35 foot depth.  Such stratification is historically typical for this lake.  The layer of water in the thermocline resisted mixing, which explains why mussels located above and below the thermocline were eradicated quickly, yet those within the thermocline required targeted treatment techniques and 40 days to succumb to 100% mortality.  Microscopic analysis of plankton tows and visual inspection of the shoreline after partial pump-down of the quarry in early November indicated that all veligers and adults were successfully exterminated.  Analysis of eDNA taken in December 2017 also suggests the eradication was complete.  The cumulative sum of copper applied throughout the entire course of treatment totaled 0.44 mg/L – noteworthy because it is less than half the concentration EPA allows (1.0 mg/L) in a single algaecide treatment.  The authors are cautiously optimistic that this is the first recorded instance of eradicating quagga mussels from an entire lake.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) The Importance of Soil Health in Ecological Restoration
AUTHORS: Bill Schumacher, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency

ABSTRACT: Frequently, stream and wetland restoration projects pay little attention to on-site historical disturbances to soils. However, an accumulating amount of research points to substrate disturbance as one of the primary causes of site failure. Investigations of several restoration projects have indicated that in many cases, when there is a failure in site hydrology and/or plant community development, a specific underlying soil disturbance, such as changes in physical soil properties or excessive nutrient buildup, can be identified. Diagnosing these potential disturbances prior to selection or construction is essential to ensuring that site development is not hampered by these underlying issues.This talk will focus on research conducted by the Ohio EPA Wetland Ecology Group on soils, in both reference and disturbed wetland and riparian habitats. Several studies have been conducted since 2011 that focus of soils as they relate to the overall ecological condition of a site. These include: 1) An intensification of the USEPA National Wetland Condition Assessment, in which a random set of 50 wetlands was assessed to compare soil factors with the overall ecological condition of the plant community; 2) A survey of reference condition riparian habitats to correlate high quality riverine flora with soil health; and 3) A paired soils study, in which identical mapped soils were analyzed in undisturbed forest habitats and adjacent heavily disturbed row cropping to illustrate variation in soil parameters between divergent levels of disturbance.Results of these studies will be discussed to illustrate how consideration of soil information may be used to assist in in the development of restoration projects.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) Strengthening Ohio’s Lake Erie Fisheries Through Research, Education, and Extension
AUTHORS: Tory Gabriel, Kristen Fussell – The Ohio Sea Grant College Program and Stone Laboratory

ABSTRACT: Ohio Sea Grant and the Ohio State University’s Stone Laboratory engage stakeholders and inform fisheries managers through research, education, and extension; often serving as a liaison between groups. This presentation will emphasize recent programs that have informed fisheries research and conservation, with a particular focus on programs carried out in partnership with resource managers. Ohio Sea Grant funded research and external grants secured by staff frequently focus on Lake Erie’s valuable fishery. Recent examples include examining Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) toxins in fish tissue and the effects of HAB turbidity on fish vision. Stone Laboratory serves as a base for research, but also the heart of our education program. Relevant courses and workshops include AIS-HACCP, Fish Sampling Techniques, and Lake Erie Sport Fishing. The Aquatic Visitors Center at Stone Laboratory, which is a former Ohio Division of Wildlife fish hatchery, is currently run as an education center by Ohio Sea Grant interacting with over 10,000 visitors each summer. Five Extension Educators, along with communicators and other staff, work with a variety of stakeholders and resource managers through various outreach and engagement programs. Examples include the annual Ohio Charter Captains Conference as well as a recent Lake Erie Sport Fish Summit, both carried out in partnership with Ohio Division of Wildlife fisheries managers. Through research, education, and extension, Ohio Sea Grant plays an important role in informing and connecting stakeholders and managers, helping to strengthen Ohio’s Lake Erie fisheries.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:40pm

(FISHERIES: EARLY LIFE HISTORY) Effect of Temperature on Growth, Energy Reserves, Survival, and Settling Time of Endogenous Pallid Sturgeon Scaphirhynchus Albus Larvae
AUTHORS: Joseph T. Mrnak, Department of Natural Resource Management, South Dakota State University; Steven R. Chipps, South Dakota Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit, South Dakota State University; Daniel A. James, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Pallid Sturgeon Scaphirhynchus albus are a federally endangered species endemic to the Missouri River basin and the lower Mississippi River. Natural reproduction of Pallid Sturgeon is negligible in the Missouri River with a recruitment bottleneck believed to occur during the drift phase of endogenous development. Understanding factors that affect survival of Pallid Sturgeon larvae is key given their critical status and ongoing recovery efforts. In this study, we evaluated the effects of water temperature on growth, energy reserves, survival, and settling time of endogenous Pallid Sturgeon larvae (<25 mm TL). We tested three water temperature treatments at a velocity of 8.9 cm s<sup>−1</sup>; treatments included low temperature (18.7 °C), medium temperature (20.4 °C), and high temperature (23.3 °C). Larvae maintained at the high temperature exhibited significantly greater growth rate (1.05 mm d<sup>−1</sup>) than larvae maintained at medium and low temperatures (1.04 and 1.03 mm d<sup>−1</sup>, respectively). Energy reserves of Pallid Sturgeon larvae maintained in the high temperature treatment declined significantly compared to larvae in the medium and low temperature treatments. Moreover, larvae in the high temperature treatment experienced significantly greater mortality and settled on the bottom significantly faster than those in the medium and low temperature treatments. Increasing river water temperatures by manipulating water releases from upstream dams may provide a potential restoration option by shortening the development time and thus the drift distance required during the endogenous phase of Pallid Sturgeon larvae.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

1:40pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 1) The Nationwide Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA) for Monarch Butterfly on Energy and Transportation Lands: Its Development and Scope
AUTHORS: Dan Salas, Senior Ecologist, Cardno; Iris Caldwell, Program Manager, Sustainable Landscapes, Energy Resources Center at The University of Illinois at Chicago

ABSTRACT: Rights-of-ways offer unique conservation opportunities by connecting landscapes and providing a generally stable habitat protected from future development.  The Rights-of-Way as Habitat Working Group, composed of multiple industries and unique partnerships, are working to support pollinators and other wildlife, within these working lands. Inspired by population declines and potential listing of monarch butterfly under the Endangered Species Act, members of this group have worked together to develop a voluntary agreement to enhance and sustain monarch butterfly habitat. Underscoring the importance of this effort, the partnership of more than two dozen energy and transportation organizations is undertaking one of the largest scale CCAAs to date and under one of the fastest timelines pursued for such a large conservation agreement. During this session, we will discuss how voluntary conservation tools like CCAAs can be used to provide important conservation, and how this agreement was developed. We will also highlight what conservation improvements are included within the Nationwide Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for Monarch Butterfly on Energy and Transportation Lands, and discuss ways that conservation partners can engage in this broad-scale conservation effort.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 1:40pm - 2:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Lake Sturgeon Movements in the Missouri River Basin Call Attention to the Importance of Tributaries in Large River Fish Conservation
AUTHORS: Michael Moore, Craig Paukert – University of Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

ABSTRACT: Large river tributaries often provide spawning and nursery habitat for large river fishes and may be less altered than the mainstem large rivers.  We used telemetry to identify tributary use and habitat selection of Lake Sturgeon, a threatened species, in the Osage and Gasconade rivers, two tributaries of the Missouri River in Missouri USA near the southern edge of their range. We implanted 96 Lake Sturgeon with acoustic transmitters in the Osage and Gasconade Rivers from 2015 to 2018 and relocated fish by remote receivers in the tributaries and mainstem Missouri River and monthly manual tracking. Ninety Lake Sturgeon have spent 75% of their time in tributaries. However, 20 fish have not been detected for up to 10 months, suggesting they may leave the tributaries for extended periods.  Bayesian discrete choice models determined that Lake Sturgeon selected deeper habitats across all seasons. Lake Sturgeon also selected habitats closer to the main channel in all seasons except spring when they moved closer to the bank in faster flows. Lake Sturgeon did not select habitats based on substrate composition or cover. This information may help inform river conservation and the consideration of tributaries into conservation strategies for large river fishes. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Ecology and Management of Fall and Spring Migrating Shorebirds in the Western Basin of Lake Erie
AUTHORS: Robert J. Gates, Ohio State University School of Environment and Natural Resources; Mark Shieldcastle, Black Swamp Bird Observatory; David Ewert, American Bird Conservancy; Keith Norris, The Wildlife Society; Tara Baranowski, The Nature Conservancy in Ohio

ABSTRACT: The Lake Erie Marsh region, long recognized as a continentally significant migratory crossroad for waterfowl and other migratory birds with a rich tradition of waterfowl hunting was recognized as a regionally significant migration staging area by the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network (WHSRN).  Nomination as a WHSRN site was based on counts of 38 shorebird species with minimum known numbers >100,000 birds, compiled from standardized surveys by Black Swamp Bird Observatory during 1993-1999.  Repeated surveys of random plots during springs and autumns 2002-2003 revealed shorebird populations that exceeded 100,000 birds on and near just two major marsh complexes (Winous Point Marsh Conservancy and Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge - Magee Marsh Wildlife Area) in the Lake Erie marsh region.   Shorebird habitats in the region principally comprise managed impoundments where water levels are manipulated to produce food and cover for waterfowl and create hunting opportunity.  Managed marshes were the mainstay for shorebirds during autumn and spring migration in 2002-2003, although estuaries attracted large numbers during seiche events.  Surrounding crop fields were used sporadically after precipitation events in spring but were generally too vegetated to attract shorebirds in autumn.  Four shorebird species gained 0.28–1.49 g body mass/day with invertebrate biomass densities that ranged from 3.7–12.1 kg/ha during fall migration 2006-2013.  Estimated stopover durations were 12-16 days.  The Lake Erie marsh region likely merits WHSRN status as an internationally important shorebird area.  Results from our studies are used to inform habitat conservation planning and management by state and federal agencies and NGOs in the region.  We discuss gaps in our knowledge of migrating shorebirds in the region, including spring vs. fall habitat limitation and energetic carrying capacities of cover types used by migrating shorebirds.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-09) Effects of Carbon Dioxide on Dreissenid Mussels and Its Use a Management Tool
AUTHORS: Diane Waller, USGS Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center; Michelle Bartsch, Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center; Eric Lord, Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center.

ABSTRACT: Tools to control dreissenid mussel (Dreissena polymorpha and D. bugensis) populations currently rely heavily on chemical molluscicides that can be both costly and have the potential to be environmentally harmful if misused. Carbon dioxide may be a more cost-effective and environmentally neutral option for controlling dreissenid mussel populations. Past studies have demonstrated that carbon dioxide is lethal to several species of invasive molluscs, including zebra mussels, Asian clams (Corbicula fluminea), and New Zealand mud snails (Potamopyrgus antipodarum). We evaluated the effects of various treatment regimens [i.e., exposure duration and pCO<sub>2 </sub>(partial pressure of carbon dioxide)] on mortality, byssal thread formation and attachment, and narcotization behavior of adult zebra mussels. Percent mortality and time to death were determined at three temperatures across a range of pCO<sub>2</sub> levels (70,000 – 250,000 µm). Our results indicated that elevated PCO<sub>2</sub> exposure induced narcotization and reduced attachment of zebra mussels within 24 h. Time to death was inversely correlated with water temperature and pCO<sub>2</sub> and ranged from 3 – 13 d. The potential application of carbon dioxide into an integrated pest management program for dreissenid mussels will be discussed.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-10) Fishes of Ohio Inventory and Distribution Project
AUTHORS: Brian J. Zimmerman, The Ohio State University; Dan Rice, (retired) Division of Natural Areas and Preserves (ODNR); Marc R. Kibbey, The Ohio State University; Marymegan Daly, PhD, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Milton Trautman’s classic book, “The Fishes of Ohio,” was published in 1981 and did an excellent job presenting the distribution and status of Ohio’s fish fauna at the time. In subsequent decades, fish communities of Ohio have changed in composition and distribution. In 2011, we began an inventory of the current status of all fish species found in Ohio. Some of these changes we have documented are positive, including the large scale expansion of many species of riverine fish that have been characterized as sensitive to water quality. Other changes point towards declines, particularly in species reliant on wetland or glacial lake habitats. In addition to trends in distribution and abundance of native species, we see significant impact in the occurrence of non-indigenous species that were not documented by Trautman. The results of the 2011-2017 distribution surveys are summarized in our 2018 field guide “A Naturalist Guide to the Fishes of Ohio” by Dan Rice and Brian Zimmerman.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Effects of Temperature and Exposure Duration on Four Potential Rapid-Response Tools for Zebra Mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) Eradication
AUTHORS: Todd Severson, James Luoma, Jeremy Wise, Matthew Barbour – US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Because zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) continue to spread through inland lakes and rivers of North America somewhat undeterred, the need to develop tools to control their populations has become a major research effort.  Developing data regarding the impacts of water temperature and exposure duration on the toxicity of chemical molluscicides to zebra mussels will assist resource managers to select a treatment regimen with the greatest potential for successful eradication. We evaluated the toxicity of two EPA-registered (EarthTec QZ and Zequanox) and two nonregistered (potassium chloride and niclosamide) zebra mussels toxicants over a range of water temperatures and exposure durations. We evaluated each toxicant in replicated laboratory studies conducted at 7, 12, 17, and 22°C using exposure durations ranging from 8 hours to 14 days. The minimum lethal concentration of toxicant(s) and the exposure duration required to achieve complete zebra mussel mortality at each test temperature will be presented.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) Keys to Successfully Establishing a Native Plant Community on Wetland and Stream Restoration Projects
AUTHORS: Brian Gara, The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: Plants are outstanding indicators of environmental quality. Extremely small variations in physical site parameters, such as water depth and duration, soil health, and temperature can lead to significant differences in the plant community structure. Many plant species have very narrow ranges of tolerances to these factors which result in extreme habitat affinities. Others are generalists that can thrive under a wide range of habitat types and disturbances. Unfortunately, a majority of the more undesirable, non-native, “invasive” species, are highly adapted to sites that are heavily disturbed by human activities. In most cases, restoration projects involve sites that have been subjected historically to significant levels of anthropogenic disturbance. These projects are also exposed to a high level of mechanical disturbance during construction. Additionally, many riparian restoration projects have limited performance goals that only target the planting of tree species, disregarding the other critical strata (e.g. shrubs and herbs) generally present within native plant communities. This practice severely reduces the long-term habitat potential for these sites. Because of these limitations, establishing a robust, diverse, and sustainable native plant community on restoration projects can be challenging.Several research studies have been conducted by the author that focus on the ecological condition of the plant communities associated with riparian and wetland restoration projects. Results of these studies will be discussed to focus on key factors that can be implemented to ensure a functional, native plant community is successfully established.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:00pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) Conserving and Enhancing Pennsylvania’s Fisheries Through Conservation, Education, and Research
AUTHORS: Sean Rafferty, Pennsylvania Sea Grant College Program

ABSTRACT: The Pennsylvania Sea Grant College Program (PASG) strives to conserve and enhance Pennsylvania’s fisheries through extension, education, and research. Extension efforts focus on increasing recreational fishing access along streams in the Pennsylvania Lake Erie drainage through the implementation of the Pennsylvania Erie Access Improvement (EAI) program. Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie tributaries are highly prized for steelhead fishing for the recreational and economic benefits provided to the region. Through the EAI program, PASG has collaborated with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, to permanently conserve and provide public fishing access at 19 locations totaling 7.3 miles of Lake Erie tributary streams. Education efforts focus on providing kinesthetic learning opportunities for underserved youth through Project Fishing and Learning Youth (FLY). Project FLY introduces students in the Lake Erie and Delaware River watersheds to fly-tying techniques, fish identification, fish habitat, and fishing strategies for both fly-fishing and spin casting. Participants develop lifelong outdoor recreation skills and a greater sense of the importance of coastal stewardship. Through Project FLY, PASG has collaborated with the S.O.N.S of Lake Erie, to educate more than 2,800 students. Research efforts focus on understanding the health of fishes (e.g. intersex in smallmouth bass and young of year smallmouth bass mortality), the impact of invasive fishes on native fishes (e.g. flathead catfish), and the economic value of the Pennsylvania Lake Erie sport fishery. This presentation will provide an overview of the EAI program, Project FLY, and research projects PASG staff and collaborators are implementing to conserve and enhance Pennsylvania’s fisheries.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:00pm

(FISHERIES: EARLY LIFE HISTORY) Larval Drift Sampling for Scaphirhynchus Sturgeon in the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers
AUTHORS: Kevin Haupt, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Hae Kim, West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources; Donovan Henry, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Sara Tripp, Big Rivers and Wetlands Field Station Missouri Department of Conservation; Quinton Phelps, West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Larval fish sampling can provide insight into early life vital rates, abundance, and drift dynamics. In riverine environments, larval fish drift dynamics may influence early-life survival. Further, field and lab studies have shown that drift dynamics vary across species. Thus, information during this life stage is imperative for proper conservation and management of riverine fishes. However, successfully sampling larval fishes in riverine environments presents various challenges (e.g., spatial and temporal coverage and sampling effectiveness). As it relates to Scaphirhynchus sturgeon, these challenges are exasperated when targeting larvae in fast flowing reaches of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. Prior research suggests that Scaphirhynchus sturgeon are benthic post-hatch. Our objectives were to determine drift dynamics and origin of Pallid Sturgeon in the Missouri River, Middle Mississippi River, and Upper Mississippi. We sampled in river reaches above and below the confluence of the Misssouri River, above chain of rocks and below chain of rocks on the middle Mississippi. We employed two 1000µm mesh, rectangular framed-nets off both sides of the boat. Weights (45kg) were affixed to the bottom of each net, to keep nets upright. Additionally, flow-meters were affixed to the mouth of the nets to measure volume of water filtered. Nets were deployed from the boat via an electric winch. Sampling commenced in mid April and ended in late June.  Overall, approximately 3,500 larval drift samples were collected during the study period.  Preliminary results indicate we have captured drifting Scaphirhynchus sturgeon throughout the water column (i.e., surface, middle, and bottom) at all river reaches.  To this end, employing larval drift nets throughout the water column may provide additional insight into Scaphirhynchus sturgeon life history that will inform conservation and management of these species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:00pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 1) Effects of Pipeline Right-of-Way Habitat Management on Early Successional Songbirds in Eastern Ohio
AUTHORS: Lewis M. Lolya, Gabriel Karns, Stephen N. Matthews –The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Early successional bird species have exhibited population declines across Ohio, coinciding with a state-wide loss in young forest and shrub-scrub habitats. Additionally, forest fragmentation and land use conversion has increased with accelerating shale gas development. Pipeline right-of-ways (ROWs), which represent the largest proportion of the shale gas footprint, hold potential for early successional habitat management. This potential has been demonstrated for analogous electric ROWs, but minimal research is available for corridors with underground infrastructure. Our goals are to assess early successional avian response to forest edge-cutback techniques along pipeline ROWs and to understand avian utilization of the pipeline-forest interface. Forest-edge plots (control=11, experimental=12) were established at 10 sites across four counties in Eastern Ohio. Avian point counts, nesting surveys, and vegetation sampling were conducted within each plot. A total of 93 nests of 13 species were monitored. The proportion of failed to fledged nests was 47%, with EATO showing low nest success across sites (Fail=62%). Overall incidence of nest parasitism was higher in edge treatment ROWs (n=9) than in control (n=6). 79 total species were observed across all sites during point counts. Several species showed increased occurrence in ROW plots compared to forest plots ([alpha codes] BHCO, COYE, EATO, FISP, INBU, and NOCA) while others were more prevalent in interior forest (ACFL, OVEN, and REVI). SCTA, EAWP, and ACFL were more prevalent in experimental ROW plots than control. The opposite trend was seen for INBU, potentially due to limited forest regrowth following recent treatments. These results may demonstrate that birds exhibit species-specific selectivity for habitat structure characteristics along pipeline corridors. Although pipeline edges may provide nesting habitat, high occurrence of nest parasitism may indicate the presence of habitat traps. Furthermore, as experimental cutback zones regrow, we hypothesize increased use over time of those edges by shrub-scrub dependent birds. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:00pm - 2:20pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Tracking the Movements and Interactions Among Salmonids in Lake Ontario
AUTHORS: Sarah Larocque, University of Windsor; Tim Johnson, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry; Dimitry Gorsky, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Jon Midwood, Fisheries and Oceans Canada; Aaron Fisk, University of Windsor

ABSTRACT: In Lake Ontario, five salmonid species are part of an economically important recreational fishery, with two native species undergoing bi-national restoration efforts. Understanding species distributions, movements, and habitat use can help management in maintaining a sustainable fishery as well as improve native species restoration. Thus, it is important to quantify the salmonid movements in relation to each other in Lake Ontario. Acoustic telemetry enables us to better understand the spatial habitat use of fish, particularly in large lakes where it is difficult to monitor. This endeavor is made possible through a large collaborative effort with academics and government on both sides of the border, unified by the Great Lakes Acoustic Telemetry Observation System (GLATOS). In 2017, 40 individuals across five salmonid species have been tagged in western Lake Ontario, with an additional 50 individuals tagged in 2018. With the ever-expanding receiver array in the western and eastern basins, we are beginning to see lake-wide individual movements of some species, including Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Overall, telemetry data is informative on various levels including describing cross lake and overwintering movements which represents a gap in our understanding of Great Lakes salmonid ecology.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Great Lakes Shorelines: Influence on Landbird Distribution
AUTHORS: David Ewert, American Bird Conservancy; Christopher Tonra, The Ohio State University; Tom Will, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT:  The importance of shoreline habitats to landbirds varies with latitude, shoreline substrate, and by season.  Metamorphic bluffs with high gradient bathymetry adjacent to boreal forest along Lake Superior provide strikingly different habitat than low gradient, silty shorelines bordered by deciduous forest and forested wetlands on or near Lake Erie shorelines.  In turn, these ecologically diverse landscapes result in different land-water interactions that influence how landbirds use shoreline habitat. During stationary periods of the annual cycle, breeding and wintering seasons, species characteristic of wetlands or beach and dune habitats may be relatively common near Great Lakes shorelines.   This includes breeding Bank Swallows and Prairie Warblers and wintering Snowy Owls.  Indirect effects of a relatively cool and moist nearshore microclimate also influence distribution and relative abundance of species such as the Northern Parula and Canada Warbler.Perhaps the best known use of shoreline habitat by landbirds is that of fall-out areas, especially for passerines, and as migratory corridors for raptors and diurnally migrating passerines that follow Great Lakes shorelines.  Additionally, during spring and fall migration at least some Great Lakes shorelines and islands provide important refugia, foraging, and molt-migration areas for landbirds.   Conservation efforts for landbirds focused on Great Lakes shorelines have primarily focused on ensuring suitable habitat for migrating landbirds.  This includes formation of the Midwest Migration Network, shoreline protection, habitat restoration near Great Lakes shorelines, lights-out programs, especially in major cities, use of bird-friendly glass, and posting of a Great Lakes migration portal that provides guidance for conservation of stopover sites near the Great Lakes. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-09) Responses of Native Freshwater Mussels (Lampsilis) to Elevated Carbon Dioxide Concentrations in Acute and Chronic Exposures
AUTHORS: Michelle Bartsch, Diane Waller – US Geological Survey, Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center

ABSTRACT: The potential use of carbon dioxide (CO<sub>2</sub>) as a control tool for Asian carp and dreissenid mussels has prompted investigation into the effects of elevated pCO2, under different scenarios, on native unionid mussels. We measured the lethal and sublethal responses of juvenile fat mucket (Lampsilis siliquoidea) and the federally endangered Higgins’ eye (L. higginsii) mussels to elevated pCO<sub>2</sub> in acute (96 h) and chronic (28 d) exposures. The lethal and sublethal responses included: survival, growth, byssal thread formation, behavior, and gene expression. In acute exposures, juvenile mussel survival was 100% after exposure to concentrations of 178 to 457 mg/L CO<sub>2</sub>. However, burial behavior and byssal thread formation were adversely affected during CO<sub>2</sub> exposure. Juvenile mussels recovered after a one-week post-exposure period as >40% of fat mucket reburied and >60% had produced new byssal threads. During chronic exposures to lower CO<sub>2</sub> concentrations (32 to 118 mg/L), significant mortality of juveniles occurred at =60 mg/L CO<sub>2</sub>. Sublethal effects of carbon dioxide on growth were evidenced by reduced shell growth and body condition (dry tissue weight: shell length). Expression of chitin synthase, key for shell formation, was downregulated at 28 days of exposure. The results indicate that the response of freshwater mussels to elevated pCO2 will vary with exposure pattern. Acute exposure to even extremely high pCO2 appears to be less harmful to juvenile mussels compared to extended exposure to sublethal concentrations of CO<sub>2</sub>.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-10) A Partnership to Recover Ohio’s Giant Salamander, the Eastern Hellbender
AUTHORS: Gregory Lipps, Jr., Nicholas Smeenk – Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: The Eastern Hellbender is a large, completely aquatic salamander that inhabits lotic waters, spending most of its life under large rocks.  Surveys from 2006-2009 found that the relative abundance of Hellbenders in Ohio declined by over 80% with most populations having reduced recruitment of young.  A diverse group of individuals representing state and federal wildlife and environmental agencies, zoos, soil and water conservation districts, and academic researchers have met regularly for the past decade under the umbrella of the Ohio Hellbender Partnership to develop and implement plans to recover the species and its habitat.  Since 2011, we have collected eggs from 27 nests for head-starting in biosecure facilities, resulting in the release of 960 individuals into Ohio waterways. While water quality in the state greatly improved after the passage of environmental legislation in the early 1970s, increases in sedimentation and conductivity still pose major impediments to maintaining suitable habitat and establishing self-sustaining populations, especially in areas of increased oil and gas exploration.  While the future of the Hellbender in Ohio is far from certain, the diverse partnership has become a model for addressing the multitude of challenges associated with the recovery of endangered species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) A Structural Activity Relationship (SAR) Approach to Identify New Chemical Controls for Invasive Aquatic Species
AUTHORS: Joel G. Putnam, Diane Waller, Justine Nelson– US Geological Survey Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center; Tammy J. Clark, Viterbo University

ABSTRACT: The search for new chemical controls for aquatic invasive species (AIS) that are efficacious and selective is needed to expand the arsenal of AIS control tools for resource managers. Chemical control options for dreissenid mussels (Dreissena polymorpha and D. bugensis) currently rely heavily on molluscicides that can be costly and/or harmful to nontarget species. The Environmental Protection Agency ECOTOX Knowledgebase was used to gather toxicity data for over 400 taxa covering five kingdoms and 7700 chemicals. Our search used structural activity relationships (SARs) to correlate chemical information with biological activity and predict new chemicals that are effective against dreissenid mussels. A database of chemical descriptors, such as molecular weight, solubility, and polar surface area, was created and published to link the chemical structure/information with species-specific toxicity. Toxicity trials have been initiated using a category of chemicals with high selective toxicity towards dreissenid mussels. Chemicals that produced significant mortality of dreissenid mussels were also tested on nontarget native freshwater mussels to determine selectivity. The results of toxicity trial will be combined with chemical characteristics (e.g., solubility) to identify toxicants that may be suitable for incorporation into a microparticle that is ingested by dreissenid mussels.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) Restoring Wetland Habitat for Amphibian Communities
AUTHORS: Mick Micacchion, The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: The wetlands that support amphibian breeding and habitat functions are being lost at a much higher rate than wetlands of other types. This is true for both urban and rural landscapes. These damages do not always directly impact the wetlands themselves but instead involve solely large-scale degradation of the habitats surrounding the wetlands. However, both direct and indirect impacts are debilitating to the wetlands’ amphibian communities. Additionally, far too often the lost amphibian community functions of wetlands are not being replaced through compensatory wetland mitigation or other wetland restoration and enhancement projects. Restoring wetland amphibian functions requires many considerations. By far, the most important factor is the location of the replacement wetland and ensuring there is the ability for it to interact with nearby surrounding habitat features that are supportive of wetland amphibian communities. Sites should be targeted toward areas where adjoining intact, high quality vernal pools are present and there is the ability to restore wetlands on surrounding hydric soils. Additionally, it is important to incorporate the attributes displayed by the area’s best remaining vernal pools in the restoration wetlands. These habitat components include seasonal hydroperiods, shallow slopes to the pools, supportive microtopographic features, and establishing connection to natural vernal pools, and their forested surrounding habitats, through reforestation. In the end, high quality complexes of forested landscapes that contain fully functional vernal pools, with exceptional amphibian communities, will result when the above considerations are the basis for wetland restoration and enhancement projects.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) New York Sea Grant and Great Lakes Fisheries: Past, Present, and Future
AUTHORS: Jesse Lepak, New York Sea Grant

ABSTRACT: New York Sea Grant (NY Sea Grant) has sought to protect, maintain, and enhance fisheries resources in the state of New York for almost 50 years. Through a combination of outreach, extension, and education, NY Sea Grant has communicated important messaging and information to recreational and commercial anglers, resource managers and policy makers, as well as coastal residents and business owners to help them make informed decisions. Another primary focus of NY Sea Grant is to support and facilitate research that contributes to addressing the needs of stakeholders. Support comes in many forms including funding from NY Sea Grant large and small grant programs, extension assistance and guidance from NY Sea Grant Extension Specialists, facilitation of synergistic interactions among researchers to enhance their individual work and its impact, connecting researchers and stakeholders to increase the applicability and value of research outcomes, developing networks of experts and communicators as well as other personnel to take research beyond publication to application, identifying funding opportunities and sometimes aiding in the development and execution of grant proposals with stakeholder groups, and much more. A broad overview will be provided describing previous and current NY Sea Grant activities and interests related to fish and fisheries in the Great Lakes. A case study describing a current NY Sea Grant program related to fisheries sustainability and ethics will also be presented with the objective of receiving useful feedback to increase the scope and relevance of the program. The presentation will end with some perspective on potential future initiatives and objectives for NY Sea Grant in the Great Lakes and possibilities for collaboration with other institutes and programs within the Great Lakes basin.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:20pm

(FISHERIES: EARLY LIFE HISTORY) Phenology and Magnitude of Larval Fish Drift and Production Near the St. Marys River Rapids, MI
AUTHORS: Jason Gostiaux, Contractor at US Geological Survey; Edward F. Roseman, US Geological Survey; Robin L. DeBruyne, University of Toledo; Jason L. Fischer, University of Toledo; Ashley Moerke, Lake Superior State University; Kevin Kapuscinski, Lake Superior State University; Christopher Olds, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Faith Vandrunen, Contractor at US Geological Survey; Kaley Genther, US Fish and Wildlife Service; Ethan Binkowski, Lake Superior State University

ABSTRACT: The St. Marys River is the Great Lakes connecting channel connecting Lake Superior to Lake Huron and is the international border between Michigan, United States, and Ontario, Canada.  This large river has a variety of habitats present including lakes, wetlands, islands, tributaries, side channels, and main channels.  Water flow is regulated through the navigational locks and a series of 16 compensating gates immediately upstream of the area known as the St. Marys Rapids.  This area is considered an important spawning and nursery area for numerous fish species, although no research has been done to assess fish use or production.  To address this knowledge gap, active and passive larval sampling gears were used to measure the timing and abundance of larval fishes upstream and downstream of the St. Marys Rapids area from May-August 2018.  Drifting eggs and larvae were collected near the bottom and surface during weekly daytime and nighttime sampling.  Eggs and larvae of several native (suckers, sculpins, troutperch, minnows) and introduced species (rainbow smelt, salmonids) were collected at sites above and below the St. Marys Rapids area, however, larval fish and eggs were more abundant below the St. Marys Rapids.  Furthermore, salmonid and lake sturgeon larvae were only captured downstream of the rapids area.  Lake sturgeon larvae have been documented in the Garden River, Ontario, a tributary of the St. Marys River, however, this is the first contemporary documentation of successful lake sturgeon spawning and larval drift within the St. Marys River proper.  Evidence of fish use of the St. Marys Rapids including the presence of multiple sensitive species, confirms the importance of this area for spawning, production, and biodiversity.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:20pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 1) Effects of Conservation Practice and Site Age on Vegetation Structure and Avian Habitat Use in Fields Enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program
AUTHORS: Bryan M. Reiley, T.J. Benson – Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT: Farmland set aside programs provide important habitat for many wildlife species, yet little information exists regarding how vegetation structure and species respond to conservation practice and site age. This information could provide managers with a guide for how to implement, enhance, and maintain wildlife benefits of these programs. Here, we describe how avian species respond to conservation practice and time since restoration at 172 sites enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) in Illinois. To do this we surveyed sites enrolled in four different conservation practices (CPs) within CREP during the breeding seasons of 2012 – 2015 using point counts and vegetation surveys. Vegetation structure and composition varied among CPs with hardwood tree plantings having the greatest amount of understory vegetation, tree and shrub cover, and lowest distance to nearest tree. Conversely, permanent wildlife habitat had the greatest distance to nearest tree, grass cover, and least tree cover. Cover of tree and live vegetation increased and distance to nearest tree decreased with site age and there were conspicuous differences among CPs and site age for these variables and bare ground cover. Avian densities varied among CP types, however only Dickcisselswere significantly greater in sites enrolled as permanent wildlife habitat and, similarly, Bell’s Vireo and Field Sparrow  were greater in hardwood tree plantings. Dickcissel density decreased and Field Sparrow density increased as fields aged, but these relationships were not consistent among CP types. Differences among CPs largely resulted from differences in dominance in woody vegetation due to differing management goals. Interestingly, many of our focal species had wider successional tolerances than previously suggested. Our results demonstrate that conservation benefits change over time depending on the starting CP and this information can be used to predict temporal changes in habitat suitability and target conservation benefits toward conservation priority species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:20pm - 2:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Do Growth Histories Determine Migration Patterns in Walleye?
AUTHORS: Richard T. Kraus, US Geological Survey - Lake Erie Biological Station; Michael J. Hansen, US Geological Survey - Hammond Bay Biological Station; Matthew D. Faust, Ohio Department of Natural Resources - Division of Wildlife; Graham D. Raby, University of Windsor; Christopher S. Vandergoot, US Geological Survey - Lake Erie Biological Station; Charles C. Krueger, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: Migratory fish movement can be classified as partial or differential migration, contingent behaviors, or other types of alternative migratory tactics. Growing evidence suggests that multiple variables, including metabolic and growth trajectories, risk-reward tradeoffs, personality, social interactions, and current physiological state underpin such modalities. We combined acoustic telemetry with sclerochronology to investigate if and how growth was associated with seasonal habitat use of a migratory freshwater fish, Lake Erie Walleye Sander vitreum. Non-linear mixed-effects modeling of back-calculated length-at-age from fin spines revealed individual growth trajectories that varied among spawning locations. Further, logistic principal components analysis of acoustic telemetry detections revealed stock-specific patterns in seasonal habitat use. Our results highlighted that individuals and groups of individuals within a stock are likely subjected to varying levels of fishing mortality based upon their migration pattern. For managers, differences in growth associated with spatial modalities in movement may translate into overexploitation of population segments.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-10) Aquatic Ecosystem Conservation
AUTHORS: S. Mažeika P. Sullivan, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Ohio’s stream, river, and wetland ecosystems have been subjected to multiple environmental stressors (e.g., changes in climate and land-use; alterations in stream hydrogeomorphic processes; ecosystem contaminants and nutrient enrichment, etc.). These changes can affect aquatic communities and ecosystems in myriad and interactive ways, with rare and endangered species particularly susceptible. The Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership (OBCP) has been an effective mechanism in supporting and catalyzing applied research that directly informs conservation, restoration, and management of rare fish species, aquatic communities, and ecosystem function. Here, I overview specific examples of linked research-conservation activities supported by OBCP and how they have contributed to improved aquatic ecosystem health (e.g., impacts of dam removal, linkages between fluvial geomorphology and aquatic communities, rare fish propagation and reintroduction). I also highlight additional advantages of OBCP in the context of aquatic resources including training and diversifying undergraduate and graduate students, leveraging for federal funding, and increasing science communication.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Update on Zequanox® Molluscicide as Management Tool for Invasive Dreissenid Mussels
AUTHORS: Seth Donrovich, Marrone Bio Innovations

ABSTRACT: Zequanox molluscicide, a biological control for invasive dreissenid mussels, has been available for commercial use in enclosed and open water systems for approximately six years. During this time, the product has undergone development and been strategized for a variety of applications and markets. The product was recently trialed in Florida on Mytilopsis leucophaeata, with enough activity to warrant further experimentation. A biobox demonstration trial has been conducted at a hydroelectric generating station in Spain, the first trial of Zequanox in the EU. Furthermore, recently developments in fermentation has led to reduced product costs, and treatment strategies continue to be optimized with dose and hold and low dose maintenance programs being implemented. MBI looks forward to continuing collaboration on product development for use in enclosed water systems, as well as looking to optimize the product for open water applications, including development of a slow release granule or encapsulated formulation.   

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) The Power of Partnering with State Agencies to Achieve Conservation
AUTHORS: Matthew Perlik, Ohio Department of Transportation

ABSTRACT: Over the last 10 years, Ohio DOT has spent over $40 million on landscape conservation and restortation projects. This money provides an enormous contribution to protected and restored lands throughout the 34th smallest state (by area) in the US with less than 5% public lands. ODOT has developed a program that works with non-profits, for profits, universities, federal agencies, and fellow state agencies to deliver aquatic and terrestrial conseration that is lower cost, exceeds ecological improvement requirements, and is delivered faster than traditional methods. This process has expanded preserved lands, lands for recreation, and the holdings of entities dedicated to conservation. Using recent case studies, this paper will focus on the challenges and successes of working with a state DOT to deliver successful conservation within a highly developed state landscape.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant-Funded Research to Support the Lake Michigan Fishery
AUTHORS: Tomas O. Hook, Carolyn J. Foley, J. Stuart Carlton – Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, Purdue University

ABSTRACT: Southern Lake Michigan is home to a vibrant recreational fishery, where some of the most productive nursery habitats for key sport fishes are found along the heavily urbanized and industrialized Illinois and Indiana shorelines. Since the late 1990s, the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant College Program (IISG) has funded a variety of original research projects intended to support this fishery as it faces stressors that result in ecological change. This talk will review the results of Sea Grant-funded projects that assess the impact of aquatic invasive species, changing lower food webs, and habitat connectivity for Lake Michigan fishes, as well as projects that estimate the value of the Lake Michigan recreational fishery to Illinois and Indiana coastal communities. We will review how Sea Grant research, communications, and outreach activities helped these projects find new audiences and new collaborators, and discuss how we were able to leverage Sea Grant-funded activities with broader efforts to understand the Lake Michigan fishery.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:40pm

(FISHERIES: EARLY LIFE HISTORY) Maturation of Artificial Fish Spawning Reefs in the St. Clair-Detroit River System
AUTHORS: Jason L. Fischer, University of Toledo, Lake Erie Center; Edward Roseman, US Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Christine Mayer, University of Toledo, Lake Erie Center; Todd Wills, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Lake St. Clair Fisheries Research Station

ABSTRACT: Artificial rock reefs have been used to remediate spawning substrates for lithophilic spawning fishes (e.g., Lake Sturgeon, Acipenser fulvescens;Lake Whitefish, Coregonus clupeaformis; and Walleye, Sander vitreus) in the St. Clair-Detroit River System. Early projects used species specific metrics (e.g., proximity to historic spawning locations) to guide reef placement. However, long-term success of some of the initial reefs was compromised by accumulation of fine sediments. Therefore, to improve the likelihood of successful reef function, project managers incorporated geomorphological criteria in 2013 to avoid placing reefs in areas near sediment sources and depositional zones. To evaluate the effectiveness of the revised placement process, we quantified physical maturation of artificial reefs using 1) annual down-looking and side-scan sonar surveys beginning in 2014 to measure reef areas and bottom roughness and 2) underwater video surveys beginning in 2015 to quantity sediment composition. Roughness of reefs constructed after 2013 remained greater than bottom roughness in areas adjacent to the reefs thru 2017, however, roughness of the Hart’s Light Reef was significantly lower in 2017 than in 2014, indicating some sediment accumulation. Similarly, sediment composition of the reefs remained similar thru 2017 and prevalence of reef rock was high, except at Hart’s Light Reef, where dreissenid mussel shells composed 32% of the substrate by age three. However, in 2018 reef rock was less prevalent at all reefs, due to accumulation of shells, fine sediments, and gravel. Despite the use of geomorphic criteria to identify areas most suitable for reef construction, sediment composition of the reefs has changed and long-term evaluation is required to determine if the changes observed in 2018 are temporary or representative of a longer trend. Nevertheless, our evaluation indicates future reef restoration projects could benefit by incorporating methods for maintenance, in addition to using geomorphic criteria to identify restoration sites.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

2:40pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 1) Reptile and Small Mammal Occupancy in Prairie Strips Integrated in an Agricultural Landscape
AUTHORS: Matthew D. Stephenson, Lisa A. Schulte – Iowa State University Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management; Robert W. Klaver, U.S. Geological Survey, Iowa Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

ABSTRACT: Grasslands in the Midwest United States have seen a precipitous decline over the last 150 years, resulting in the loss of millions of acres of habitat for wildlife. A large majority of the land in the Midwest is privately owned and efforts to restore habitat on large scales will have to include partnerships with private landowners. Contour buffer strips of diverse native prairie planted in row crop fields have been demonstrated to be very effective at reducing nutrient and soil runoff and may also serve as a significant area of habitat for wildlife such as reptiles and small mammals.From 2015-2018 we investigated reptile and small mammal occupancy in contour buffer strips of diverse native prairie and other on-farm habitat patches on 15 sites in Iowa, USA. We placed plywood artificial cover objects in perennially vegetated conservation features on farms and checked them between 4-20 times each year from April-October. We modeled patch occupancy in Program MARK to test if landscape variables such as patch size, fragmentation, connectivity, and vegetation diversity predicted occupancy for several species of reptiles and small mammals. We also modeled potential nuisance variables such as time-of-year, time-of-day, and weather that could affect detection probability. A greater understanding of how these less-frequently studied taxa utilize on-farm habitat could aid managers and policy makers to help make agricultural conservation programs effective for conserving as many taxa as possible.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Full Annual Cycle Ecology and Conservation of Migratory Birds in the Lower Great Lakes
AUTHORS: Christopher M Tonra, School of Environment and Natural Resources, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Increasingly the bias in research towards the stationary portion of the breeding season in animal ecology is being recognized as a barrier to effective conservation. While breeding seasons limit productivity, survival can be most limited outside of the breeding season, and determining limiting factors during these stages can be critical to understanding population dynamics and habitat requirements. This is the case for many populations of migratory birds in the either breed, stage/stopover during migration, or overwinter in the lower Great Lakes. I will present an overview of full annual cycle research on migratory birds in the coastal lower Great Lakes, as well as a more detailed look into several case studies that have advanced our knowledge in this area. This will include an examination of applications for emerging technologies and coordinated monitoring to bridge current information gaps.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 2:40pm - 3:20pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:00pm

Refreshment Break with Exhibitors
Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:00pm - 3:20pm
TBD

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) Numerical Analysis Method for Converting Telemetry Patterns into Engineering Design Guidance: Lessons from 20 Years of Government and Private Sector Projects
AUTHORS: R. Andrew Goodwin, U.S. Army Engineer R&D Center

ABSTRACT: Telemetry projects are often burdened with the need to convert measured fish movement patterns into actionable management guidance that can be quickly used for improving the engineering design of waterways infrastructure, water quality, and/or flowrate. With increasing attention on non-salmonids, one can assess in hindsight the methods that led to significant new insight of juvenile Pacific salmon and how these methods are presently being used to understand fish movement in the Midwest. I explain how interpretations of fish behavior through the lens of ELAM modeling analyses has changed over the past 20 years and how the ELAM is presently being applied to understand species in the Midwest. The ELAM model is a numerical analysis providing an independent viewpoint on fish movement behavior, uniquely separate from traditional statistical insights, which can serve as one of the pillars for informing future design and management of waterways and infrastructure. The ELAM model uses a non-trivial process for converting fish telemetry data into a mechanistic explanation for how/why animal movement patterns emerged the way they did. The ELAM method provides one of the strongest means for forecasting plausible fish response to future design and management actions, recognizing that all methods for predicting behavior are imperfect. The ELAM model is a cost-effective means for vetting future designs and management actions using fish telemetry as input in the early stages of water resource alternatives formulation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) The Effect of Hydrological Restoration on Nutrient Concentrations and Macroinvertebrate Communities in Lake Erie Coastal Wetlands
AUTHORS: Elizabeth A. Berg, Lauren M. Pintor – Ohio State University, School of Environment & Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Growing concern over the occurrence of harmful algal blooms has prompted efforts to reconnect coastal wetlands to Lake Erie and its tributaries in order to restore ecosystem functions and provide biodiversity support. In particular, stakeholders have collaborated to hydrologically reconnect approximately 2,397 acres of protected, diked wetlands in Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge in an effort to reduce nutrient inputs from the Maumee Area of Concern and improve habitat for economically important fisheries and wildlife. However, hydrologic connection to Lake Erie and impaired tributaries within the watershed may expose biota in previously diked wetlands to new stressors such as nutrient enrichment and invasion of non-native species. Here we examined the effect of hydrologic reconnection of diked wetlands on nutrient concentrations and macroinvertebrate biodiversity. Specifically, our objectives were to: 1) compare phosphorous and nitrogen concentrations between diked and reconnected wetlands,  2) compare taxonomic and functional trait diversity of macroinvertebrates between diked and reconnected wetlands, and 3) examine the relationships between nutrients and macroinvertebrate communities. If the reconnection of coastal wetlands had an effect on nutrient levels and macroinvertebrate communities, we predicted that 1) nutrients and macroinvertebrates would differ in reconnected and diked wetlands, and 2) macroinvertebrate communities would be impaired in wetlands with higher nutrient concentrations. We found total nitrogen was lower in reconnected wetlands, but total phosphorus was similar in reconnected and diked wetlands. All macroinvertebrate taxonomic metrics and most functional metrics were similar in reconnected and diked wetlands. Nutrient concentration gradients and yearly nutrient fluctuation, rather than wetland restoration, drove shifts in macroinvertebrate community structure.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Avoidance Behavior of Cold-, Cool-, and Warm-water Fish Species to Zequanox®, a Biopesticide for Dreissenid Mussel Control
AUTHORS: Matthew T. Barbour, James A. Luoma, Todd J. Severson, Jeremy K. Wise – US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Zequanox® is an EPA-registered molluscicide for controlling populations of dreissenid mussels (zebra and quagga mussels). Zequanox® has demonstrated selective toxicity to dreissenid mussels. However, recent research indicates Zequanox can impact body condition and even cause mortality in non-target species.  We assessed the avoidance behavior of two species each of cold-, cool-, and warm-water fish (lake trout, brook trout, lake sturgeon, yellow perch, and fathead minnow) to Zequanox® at the maximum concentration allowed by the product label (100 mg A.I./L).  Naïve, juvenile fish were individually (n = 30) observed in a two-current choice tank through which treated and untreated water flowed simultaneously on either side.  Each individual fish was observed during a control period (20 min) with no treatment and two treatment periods (20 min each) between which the treated side was alternated to eliminate bias.  Positional data was collected and tabulated in real time with EthoVision® XT software.  Zequanox® concentrations and water quality (pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, and specific conductance) were monitored during each trial.  Results from this research will help inform resource managers of the likelihood of fish to avoid Zequanox® treated areas, thereby assisting in the establishment of treatment-related risk assessments.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) Working with the United States Army Corps of Engineers for Aquatic Resource Restoration and Enhancement
AUTHORS: Cory Wilson, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Huntington District

ABSTRACT: Aquatic resource restoration and enhancement projects, though beneficial, are often subject to the United States Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) regulatory authority under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and/or Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899. This portion of the symposium will provide a general overview of these Acts and the types of activities that do, and do not, require Department of the Army permits. In addition, a description of the typical Corps permitting/approval mechanisms for implementing these types of projects will be provided (e.g. Nationwide Permits and Mitigation Banking Instruments). Finally, a summary of the Ohio Stream and Wetland Valuation Metric and the Ohio Interagency Review Team guidelines for stream and wetland mitigation banking and in-lieu fee programs in the State of Ohio will be provided. Participants in this symposium will gain a general understanding of the requirements and tools necessary for implementing aquatic resource restoration and enhancement projects under the Corps regulatory authority.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:20pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) Fisheries Extension in Southern Lake Michigan
AUTHORS: Mitchell Zischke, Jay Beugly, Leslie Dorworth, Carolyn Foley – Purdue University, Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant

ABSTRACT: Southern Lake Michigan is a complex ecosystem that supports highly valuable recreational fisheries. Located in one of the most heavily populated areas of the Great Lakes, these fisheries experience unique environmental, economic and social challenges. To meet these challenges, Purdue Extension and Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant (IISG) builds relationships among stakeholders to enable education, assessment and effaceable management of fisheries resources. Recreational fisheries extension includes hosting biannual workshops where scientists and managers present important updates and new research on key issues to anglers and other attendees. IISG also produces educational publications on complex issues such as food web dynamics, and develops interactive websites such as anglerarchive.org, fishatlas.org, and iiseagrant.org/tourism. Purdue and IISG deploy and manage two weather buoys that provide real-time data for lake users to determine safe boating and optimal fishing conditions. These buoys are supported by an easy-to-use website and an innovative Twitter account @TwoYellowBuoys. This presentation will summarize the extension and outreach program for anglers and other lake users in southern Lake Michigan and seek discussion on challenges and potential innovations for programs around the Great Lakes.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:20pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 2) Spawning Chronology and Environmental Factors Associated with Grass Carp Reproduction in the Sandusky River
AUTHORS: Nicole R. King, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center; Madeline G. Tomczak, University of Toledo; Patrick M. Kocovsky, US Geological Survey; Christine M. Mayer, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center; Song S. Qian, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center

ABSTRACT: Invasive grass carp have been documented in the Great Lakes since 1975. Although occasional individuals have been captured, it was assumed that most were sterile escapees from stocked ponds. However, spawning was documented in the Great Lakes in 2015 with the collection of eight eggs from the Sandusky River, Ohio, a Lake Erie tributary. In 2016 no eggs were found despite extensive effort, likely because no high discharge events occurred, and grass carp, like some other non-native carps, spawn during high flows. Monitoring continued in 2017 with increased sampling effort including the addition of a second net and adaptive sampling after egg detection to follow the spatial extent of the egg mass. In 2017 the Sandusky River yielded 7,000+ eggs during two high flow events. The earliest developmental stage, three (stage one= no cell division, thirty= hatch) occurred at the most upstream site and the latest developmental stage (twenty five) near the river mouth. Egg stages were more variable at downstream sites and during lower flows; slower moving eggs are more likely to hatch in the river and survive to larvae. The pattern of egg stages and spatial distribution over time indicated spawning likely occurred several times or over a prolonged period. Although the hydrograph indicates that grass carp spawn during high flows, it is unknown what proximal cues initiate spawning and what specific conditions increase the likelihood of egg survival. We back calculated spawning time based on egg stage, collection location, and temperature to determine what specific factors may trigger spawning. Furthermore, we examined the conditions that likely support egg hatching and survival within the river. Preliminary analysis indicates several spawning bouts over a <10 hour time period. The ability to predict the timing and location of GC spawning and recruitment potential has implications for future control efforts.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

3:20pm

(WILDLIFE: TURTLES) Use of Headstarting Data to Estimate Age-Specific Survival Rates of Juvenile Blanding’s Turtles
AUTHORS: Callie Klatt Golba, Department of Biological Sciences, Northern Illinois University; Gary Glowacki, 2Natural Resource Division, Lake County Forest Preserve District; Richard B. King, Department of Biological Sciences, Northern Illinois University & Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability, and Energy, Northern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Blanding’s Turtles (IUCN Endangered) are long-lived reptiles with delayed sexual maturity. Population viability analyses (PVAs) are useful tools for such species because they allow the comparison of conservation strategies over time frames that would not be possible experimentally. Accurate demographic parameter estimates are essential for reliable projection of effects of management on populations. For Blanding’s Turtles, we lack accurate estimates of juvenile survival because younger age classes are infrequently encountered and recaptured. The Lake County Forest Preserve District (LCFPD) in northeastern Illinois initiated a long-term capture-mark-recapture (CMR) project in 2004. Since 2010, LCFPD has released 879 headstarted turtles, 316 of which have been recaptured in one or more successive years. These 14 years of intensive monitoring have provided us with a unique dataset from which we estimate the survival of juvenile turtles. Using encounter histories of headstarted animals, we estimate age-specific survival rates by employing Cormack-Jolly-Seber (CJS) modelling techniques. Furthermore, by comparing size and growth trajectories of headstarted animals with those of known-age wild-born juveniles (93 unique individuals, 39 of which have been recaptured), we meaningfully apply age-specific survival estimates to wild animals. Together with other demographic information from this population (adult survival, fecundity), we anticipate more accurate population projections that will aid in evaluating conservation strategies for this population and potentially for Blanding’s Turtles elsewhere.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

3:20pm

(FISHERIES: BIG RIVERS) Identifying Catostomid Larvae Using Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) to Better Understand Reproduction Within Large River Systems
AUTHORS: Kellie N. Hanser, Cassi Moody-Carpenter, Jordan Pesik – Eastern Illinois University; Dan Roth, Indiana Department of Natural Resources; Aaron Schrey, Gerogia Southern University-Armstrong Campus; Anthony Porreca, Kaskaskia Biological Station: Illinois Natural History Survey; Robert E. Colombo, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Catostomidae, the third largest freshwater fish family, comprises a high percentage of fish biomass in river systems throughout North America. Despite their presence, there is little information on the reproductive life history for this family in large, midwestern rivers and their tributaries. To address this, we sampled larval fish in three tributaries of both the Illinois River and Wabash River in conjunction with environmental data collected on factors thought to be important for reproduction. Between 2016 and 2017, we collected 130 and 2626 catostomid larvae from the Illinois and Wabash River tributaries, respectively. Due to the morphological difficulty of identifying catostomid larvae past family taxonomic level, Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) was used to identify catostomid larvae to either genus or species. Results of larvae identification are still pending due to processing time. We expect Wabash River tributaries to have a higher abundance of Moxostoma(Redhorse) while the Illinois River tributaries will have a higher abundance in Ictiobus(Buffalo) due to differences in connectivity between the systems. Future research will examine the relationship between larval and adult catostomid abundance in the Illinois and Wabash River systems.   

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

3:20pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 2) Does Land Management Have Detectable Effects on Species Richness?
AUTHORS: Jay Vecchiet, Richard B. King – Northern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Agencies across the United States rely on data driven management practices. Whether or not those practices are successful can be ambiguous because variables other than management also shape population and community responses. Here, we test whether the effects of preserve size, preserve land cover, surrounding land cover, habitat quality, and management history have a detectable effect on species richness. We focus on amphibians and reptiles in grassland-dominated preserves in northern Illinois.  Species lists were compiled for 15 preserves ranging in size from 7 ha to 1460 ha. Habitat quality and land cover (open water, wetland, grassland, wooded, agriculture) of all preserves were analyzed using ArcMap 10.4.1. Preserves were also classified by age, prior land use, and intensity of management actions (seeding, prescribed fire, chemical and mechanical controls). Across preserves, a total of 31 amphibian and reptile species were documented, including 8 frogs and toads, 2 salamanders, 2 lizards, 6 turtles, and 13 snakes. Of these, 7 are considered Endangered, Threatened, or Species in Greatest Conservation Need in Illinois. As management is carried out, there are obvious positive effects on the environment (soil composition, plant communities, water quality), but demonstrating a positive effect on organisms with cryptic life histories, such as amphibians and reptiles, is challenging.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:20pm - 3:40pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-07) A New Software Tool for Processing VEMCO Positioning System (VPS) Study Data
AUTHORS: Frank Smith, VEMCO

ABSTRACT: The VEMCO Positioning System (VPS) uses acoustic telemetry transmitters and receivers to enable researchers to track the positions of aquatic animals with GPS-level precision or better using time-difference-of-arrival (TDOA) methods.However, there are challenges that must be overcome to achieve high-quality results. Accurate 3D positions of the receivers must be obtained, but this is typically logistically challenging, and the receivers may move unexpectedly. The detection times of animal transmitters must be logged with millisecond-level accuracy, but autonomous receivers do not have precisely synchronized clocks.In this talk, we will demonstrate a new web-based software tool for processing data from VR2Tx- and VR2AR-based VPS studies, with a special focus on the methods used to calculate accurate 3D positions of the receivers and to synchronize their clocks.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-08) Prioritizing Regional Landscapes to Achieve Biological and Social Objectives Through Wetland Bird Habitat Conservation
AUTHORS: Gregory J. Soulliere, Mohammed A. Al-Saffar – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Targeting conservation to achieve biological objectives for waterfowl and social objectives for people is an emerging priority for bird conservation Joint Ventures implementing the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP).  To help achieve NAWMP goals in the Upper Mississippi / Great Lakes Joint Venture (JV) region, we integrated objectives related to waterfowl population demography, conservation supporters (hunters and birders), and ecological goods and services important to society and developed a Decision Support Tool (DST).  Starting with a table of contemporary conservation issues, we transformed related biological and social data into a family of six spatially explicit model-based maps designed to achieve individual objectives.  Output maps were weighted based on discussion with regional decision makers (i.e., the JV Management Board) and then combined, resulting in an aggregate DST to target conservation for waterfowl and people in the JV region.  The tool was designed to be flexible and adaptable; objectives and objective weights may be adjusted and subsequent output maps customized depending on stakeholder priorities.  Current JV objectives to retain and restore high value waterfowl habitats, while enhancing hunting and birding opportunity and addressing watershed impairments, resulted in a spatially explicit DST with solid emphasis in the lower half of the Great Lakes region.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-11) Invasive Mussel Collaborative: Advancing Dreissenid Mussel Management and Control
AUTHORS: Erika Jensen, Great Lakes Commission; Sandra Morrison, U.S. Geological Survey; Ceci Weibert, Great Lakes Commission

ABSTRACT: The Invasive Mussel Collaborative is working to advance scientifically sound technology for invasive mussel control to produce measurable ecological and economic benefits. The Collaborative provides a framework for communication and coordination and is identifying the needs and objectives of resource managers; prioritizing the supporting science, implementing communication strategies; and aligning science and management goals into a common agenda for invasive mussel control. The founding members of the collaborative are the U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Commission, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Great Lakes Fishery Commission. The Great Lakes Commission provides coordination and neutral backbone support for the collaborative. A broad membership base of states, provinces, tribal and other entities and a well-organized communication network facilitates the exchange of information between scientists, managers, and stakeholders. Strong connections with other regions outside the Great Lakes are in place to provide opportunities to share lessons learned. The Collaborative maintains a robust communication network to facilitate information-sharing on priority issues related to management and control of dreissenid mussels. The Collaborative also develops products and tools to support and advance management activities and will soon finalize a regional strategy to advance zebra and quagga mussel management for the Great Lakes region. This presentation will provide an update on these efforts.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-12) Identify Aquatic Restoration Priorities Using GIS and the Watershed Approach
AUTHORS: August Froehlich, The Nature Conservancy in Ohio

ABSTRACT: Our current era of stream and wetland mitigation began with the publication in 2008 of “Compensatory Mitigation for Losses of Aquatic Resources,” aka the 2008 Mitigation Rule. By publishing this document, the USEPA and the USACE established a new paradigm for the entire process of mitigating impacts to the nation’s streams and wetlands. One of the main concepts originally proposed was the watershed approach. The watershed approach is comprised of 5 elements to drive the strategic selection of compensatory mitigation and ensure the likelihood of a mitigation plan being both successful and sustainable. Each of the 5 elements are well suited for spatial analysis. From evaluating the landscape context of a HUC-6 watershed to identifying the potential project parcels, GIS analysis allows efficient implementation of all 5 of the elements. This presentation will use the identification of a stream restoration site to provide examples of the watershed approach. Data sources, analysis methods, and supporting documents will all be discussed.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:40pm

(SYMPOSIA-13) A Professional Development Program for Community-Engaged Research
AUTHORS: Heather Triezenberg, Michigan Sea Grant, MSU Extension, Fisheries and Wildlife Department; Diane Doberneck, Michigan State University Outreach and Engagement; Rhett Register, Catherine Riseng – Michigan Sea Grant, University of Michigan

ABSTRACT: Gradaute students receive high-quality scientific training, and some receive excellent mentoring in working with state, federal and tribal partners, management agencies, community partners, or nongovernmental organizations. However, some students who have excellent practical experience might benefit from understanding foundations for community engagement.  In this presentation, we summarize professional development programs offered by Michigan Sea Grant and our partners to help increase competency in community-engaged appraoches needed to increase public understanding of and interest in conservation.  We present the foundations of our programs and recent evaluation results.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:40pm

(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 2) Early Life History of Age-0 Silver Carp in the Mississippi River Basin
AUTHORS: Hae H. Kim, Quinton E. Phelps – West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources; David Weyers, Sara J. Tripp – Missouri Department of Conservation Big Rivers Field Station.

ABSTRACT: Survival during early life history and recruitment adult structure population demographics. Numerous studies have demonstrated that riverine fishes are prone to variable early life survival and recruitment. High abundance of Silver Carp Hypophthalmichthys molitrix in the upper Mississippi River basin suggests great spawning and recruitment success. Previous studies have largely focused on characterizing adult Silver Carp populations. However, early life history has not been evaluated. Thus, we examined relative abundance, growth rates, hatch timing, and mortality of age-0 Silver Carp. We used data collected in mini-fyke nets by the Long Term Resource Monitoring element in three river upper Mississippi River reaches. A total of 154,092 age-0 Silver Carp were captured, ranging from 7.5-170 mm. Catch per unit effort ranged from 0-107 fish/net with an overall average of 11.86 (0.4) fish/net. Growth rates ranged from 0.74 – 1.81 mm/day with a total mean growth rate of 1.25 mm/d (0.03) mm/day. Daily mortality (z) ranged from 0.74-0.94 and averaged 0.832 (0.09). Silver Carp hatched within a 115-day window between 22 May and 15 September, with hatch peaking between 21 June and 19 July. Baseline demographic knowledge will aid managers control and limit Asian Carp spread throughout the Mississippi River Basin.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
HOPE BALLROOM C

3:40pm

(WILDLIFE: TURTLES) Survivability of Head-Started Blanding’s Turtles (Emydoidea blandingii) In Canada’s Rouge National Urban Park
AUTHORS: Katherine Wright, Crystal Robertson, Paul Yannuzzi, Shannon Ritchie, Andrew Lentini, Bob Johnson, Rick Vos – Adopt-A-Pond Wetland Conservation Programme, Toronto Zoo

ABSTRACT: A head-start program for Blanding’s turtles (Emydoidea blandingii) was launched in 2012 by Toronto Zoo’s Adopt-A-Pond Wetland Conservation Programme and partners in an effort to recover a local population in the Rouge National Urban Park (RNUP). As per a Population Viability Analysis (PVA) in 2013, reaching a self-sustaining population required raising 50 turtles per year for two years each at a 60 female: 40 male ratio over 20 years. The head-start turtles are incubated and raised in a protected zoo environment, which includes a month in outdoor enclosures to acclimate to natural conditions. Then, a soft-release enclosure is used with half of the cohort for in-situ to acclimate to their new wetland prior to release into the wild, while a hard-release method is used for the other half (no in-situ acclimation). The release site is known habitat for Blanding’s turtles and is in close proximity to travel corridors, though many head-start turtles remain in the wetland area in which they were released. No significant difference has been observed between home ranges of soft- and hard-release turtles. The number of turtles released per cohort has increased each year (2014: 10, 2015: 21, 2016: 36, 2017: 49, and 2018: 49), as have cumulative survival rates (2018 data is still being incorporated). Survival, movement, and habitat use patterns are monitored by radio tracking a subset of turtles from each release cohort, which occurs three times per week from May-August and once per month from December-April. The number of tracked turtles from each cohort changes yearly as more turtles are released. In 2018, a total of 48 turtles were tracked out of the 165 that have been released to date. This long-term project will use adaptive management to improve husbandry, field research, habitat restoration and community outreach as the project progresses.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM B

3:40pm

(FISHERIES: BIG RIVERS) Age-0 Daily Growth Estimation of Commercially Exploited Channel Catfish in a Free-Flowing Midwestern River
AUTHORS: K.B. Wood, Cassi J. Moody-Carpenter, Robert E. Colombo – Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Highly variable discharge experienced by the lower Wabash River due to a more natural hydrology pattern overlaps with Channel Catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) reproduction period; this leads to variable conditions for age-0 fish to develop upon hatching. There ubiquitous pattern of cryptic information published about age-0 Channel Catfish, and any insight would be advantageous to multiple facets in Channel Catfish life history. While a male will spawn multiple times through the year, reproduction is dictated by the females, only becoming gravid once annually; females becoming gravid at separate times leads to there being non-coeval cohorts. In their larval stages, endogenous feeding promotes a constant growth rate, but switching to exogenous feeding and entering the juvenile stages leads to growth dependent on the environmental conditions. We observed stable reproduction in varying conditions over four years of sampling (p > .05). Peak abundance in August signifies a peak in the aggregation of cohorts. Past surveys have shown there are at least five cohorts of age-0 Channel Catfish throughout the spawning season in the Wabash River; investigations into growth patterns of these cohorts by estimating daily growth from the otoliths can offer insight into which cohorts may best be utilizing their available resources. Variations in growth patterns could come from present conditions, normal seasonal variation, or a combination of both. Results from this study could aid in creating a recruitment index for Channel Catfish in this exploited lotic system. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 3:40pm - 4:00pm
CENTER STREET ROOM D

3:40pm

(WILDLIFE: UPLAND 2) Effects of Field and Landscape-scale Habitat on Ring-necked Pheasant Demography
AUTHORS: Tim Lyons, University of Nebraska-Lincoln; T.J. Benson, Illinois Natural History Survey; Wade Louis, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; Mike Ward, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Richard Warner, National Great Rivers Research & Education Center

ABSTRACT: In agriculturally dominated landscapes, the habitat provided by public and private lands is critical for the conservation and management for non-game as well as game species, such as ring-necked pheasants. Management of these areas to increase pheasant populations has focused on increasing field size, the amount of grassland cover in the landscape, or managing vegetation composition within fields, to improve success during the nesting or brood-rearing stages, or the survival of breeding adults. How these actions will impact overall population growth or which stages or habitat features should be prioritized for management is not always clear. We studied how habitat conditions at the field-and landscape-scale influenced the demography of ring-necked pheasants on public and private grasslands in Illinois. Between 2013-2016, we used radio telemetry to track &g