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Welcome to the interactive web schedule for the 2019 Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference! Please note, this event has passed. To return to the main Conference website, go to: www.midwestfw.org.

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CONFERENCE SCHEDULE UPDATES & CHANGES: As a result of the prolonged government shutdown, we experienced a number of cancellations and changes to the schedule. Cancellations and changes are listed here (as of January 26, 2019). 

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Symposia [clear filter]
Monday, January 28
 

10:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:20am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:00am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:00am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:00am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:20am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:40pm EST

(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; PRESENTER: Rick Lance

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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:20pm EST

(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. From 1987-2011, an average of 40.8% of bluegill over 150mm were also over 200mm, 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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:20pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:40pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:20pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

4:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:00pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:00pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

4:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

4:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

4:40pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:40pm EST

 
Tuesday, January 29
 

10:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:20am EST

(NEW) (SYMPOSIA-10) The Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership: An Innovative University-State Agency Partnership for Conservation in Ohio
AUTHORS: H. Lisle Gibbs

ABSTRACT: The Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership (OBCP) is a unique partnership between Ohio State University and the Ohio Division of Wildlife that was established in 2011. It leverages strengths of each organization to conduct outstanding scientific research that informs management and conservation of Ohio’s rare and endangered species. This talk and the associated symposium will highlight the advantages and challenges of this partnership from administrative and scientific perspectives and feature talks that describe the scientific achievements and conservation implications of OBCP-sponsored research on Ohio’s State-listed species. The goal is to provide an example of an alternative way in which funding through State Wildlife Grants can be effectively used for conservation and management activities.

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

10:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:40am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

10:40am EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:00am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:00am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:00am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:00am EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:20am EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

11:20am EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

11:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:40am EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

1:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:00pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:20pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM C

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:40pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM A/B

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

2:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:20pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:20pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:20pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

3:40pm EST

(CANCELLED) (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 EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

3:40pm EST

(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 EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:00pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-07) Incision Healing Rate of Shortnose Gars Using Novel Surgical Methods for Transmitter Implantation
AUTHORS: Sarah King, Illinois Natural History Survey; Jeffrey A. Stein, Illinois Natural History Survey/University of Illinois

ABSTRACT: Knowledge regarding the movement of wild fishes provides valuable information of their spatial ecology, habitat use, and migration patterns. Telemetry methods utilizing either radio or acoustic signals require that a transmitter be affixed to the animal, introducing the potential for adverse effects on the natural movements of study animals. Intracoelemic transmitter implantation has been documented to have limited adverse effects and is considered the best method for long-term tracking relative to gastric insertion or external attachment. Surgical procedures describing transmitter implantation are well known in the literature, however, these methods cannot be used on more primitive fishes such as Lepisosteids due to the complexity of their armored, ganoid scales. External transmitter attachments have only been used on gars because it is not possible to breech ganoid scales using traditional surgical methods. Recently, Midwood et al. (2018) described a new procedure to implant transmitters in the body cavity of Longnose Gars in Lake Ontario. The surgical procedure was deemed successful based on detection rates of the majority of fish up to 3 months post tagging; however, individual post-surgery data was unavailable due to the lack of recaptured individuals over time. To further our knowledge on the survival and healing rate using these novel surgical techniques, we conducted a sham surgery study on Shortnose Gar in a controlled laboratory setting to monitor post-surgery impacts over time. Forty-seven gar were subjected to one of three treatment groups; control, sedation only, or sedation and sham surgery, and monitored over a period of 68 days. Results from our study provide insight to the expected healing rate and survival of gars using intracoelemic transmitter attachment methods in a field setting.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-11) Bureau of Reclamation Invasive Mussel Control Research
AUTHORS: Sherri Pucherelli, Bureau of Reclamation

ABSTRACT: The Bureau of Reclamation oversees water resource management in the western United States and is responsible for the operation of diversion, delivery, storage and hydropower facilities. The first detection of invasive dreissenid mussels in the western United States was in the Lower Colorado River in 2007. Hydropower facilities along the Colorado River have experienced operational impacts related to the presence of the mussels, including unplanned outages, overheating of critical systems, and increased maintenance. Reclamation is actively involved in the development and examination of a variety of control methods to reduce the impacts of invasive mussels in Reclamation managed waters and hydropower facilities. Development of passive and environmentally responsible methods for mussel settlement prevention on critical structures at hydropower facilities has been the focus of the research. Methods examined for settlement prevention in generator cooling systems include ultra-violet light, turbulence, laser-pulsed pressure, and carbon dioxide. The durability and effectiveness of anti-fouling and foul-release coatings have been extensively examined for use on equipment such as trash racks and fish screens. Centrifugal separation and self-cleaning strainers and filtration are being examined for shell debris mitigation. Reclamation is also currently involved in several research projects designed for mussel eradication in open water including biocontrol agent identification, genetic control methods, and potash. Additionally, Reclamation is planning to peruse the winning solution resulting from the recent crowdsourcing prize challenge designed to elicit theoretical solutions for the eradication of invasive mussels in open water.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:00pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-12) Reading the Riverine Landscape and Learning From Past Restoration Designs
AUTHORS: Dana Ohman, The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: There are many riverine factors that need to be scrutinized for stream restoration.  Some of these factors are fluvial processes, riverine channel characteristics, thermal regimes, longitudinal and lateral connectivity, water quality and quantity, aquatic ecology, and physical habitat characteristics.  All too often streams and rivers are restored based on a cookbook approach without addressing the causes of degradation or individual needs of the stream.  Unfortunately, this approach creates a stream condition that does not match the natural integrity of the stream thereby creating a restoration project that will end up failing.  Learning from past incompatible designs and stream restorations create a learning opportunity to develop more dynamic restoration designs that will keep that natural integrity of the stream intact.  This talk will focus on stream characteristics, identification of a reference reach to mimic stream restoration design components, and lessons learned from past stream restoration designs. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

4:00pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-13) Communication and Outreach Lessons from a Unique Fish Spawning Habitat Restoration Project
AUTHORS: Rhett Register, Michigan Sea Grant

ABSTRACT: In 2001 Michigan Sea Grant began a project to restore fish spawning habitat in the St. Clair – Detroit River System. Rocky habitat needed by key species — including lake whitefish, lake sturgeon, and walleye — had been removed to increase the depth of the rivers for shipping, impacting fish populations.The restoration effort relied on a unique partnership between agencies, universities, and NGOs. Because of the scale, the multiple partners, and the adaptive management methods used on the project, communication (both internal and external) and outreach were key.Michigan Sea Grant was vital to keeping partners, stakeholders, and the general public informed, aware of activities, and involved. A Michigan Sea Grant Extension educator took leadership roles in river partnership and restoration groups, worked with fishing groups, gave numerous tours and interviews, contacted legislators, and worked with the news media to communicate about the project. Michigan Sea Grant Communications supported the project group, creating outreach and education materials, including news releases, web messaging, graphics, signage, and photos, and hosted public events.This presentation will give an overview of the activities and lessons learned regarding outreach and communications for a unique, long-running project that had multiple partners working together to restore fish spawning habitat in the St. Clair – Detroit River System.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:00pm - 4:20pm EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:20pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-07) Using a Simplified Approach to Analyzing Acoustic Telemetry Data and Identifying Sea Lamprey Spawning Areas in the St. Clair Detroit River System
AUTHORS: Michael Lowe, Christopher Holbrook – USGS, Hammond Bay Biological Station; Darryl Hondorp, USGS Great Lakes Science Center; Aaron Jubar, USFWS Ludington Biological Station; Jessica Barber, USFWS Marquette Biological Station; Kevin Tallon, DFO Canada Sea Lamprey Control Centre

ABSTRACT: Despite continued monitoring and control efforts, the invasive Sea Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) population in Lake Erie during 2009 was the highest in the time series and has since remained above target levels set by the Great Lakes Fishery Commission (GLFC).  It was hypothesized that Sea Lamprey production in the St. Clair and Detroit River system (SCDRS), which had undergone extensive restoration in recent years and was historically excluded from control efforts, has been under-estimated.  We present the results of a 2014 pilot study (n = 27 fish) and a larger study spanning 2016 (n = 125 fish) and 2017 (n = 125 fish) that used acoustic-tagged adult sea lamprey to identify potential spawning areas in the SCDRS.  In doing so, we introduce a new statistical method for summarizing and analyzing multidimensional fish movement data.  Our analysis of the 2014 pilot study data is congruent with a previous analysis of those same data using a more complex multinomial process model.  Both analyses show similar detection probabilities and behavioral aspects of sea lamprey movements, and ultimately reach the same conclusion: most Sea Lamprey spawning occurred in the lower half of the St. Clair River.  The 2016 and 2017 study, which had more fish and a more extensive array of acoustic receivers, further reduced the potential spawning area down to the middle St. Clair River between the mouth of the Belle River and Stag Island. The combined results of these studies address several needs identified by the GLFC and are expected to inform and guide alternative assessment and control strategies in the SCDRS.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

4:20pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-11) A Research Path to the Control of Dreissenids Throughout Entire Water Bodies
AUTHORS: Dan Molloy, Molloy & Associates, LLC

ABSTRACT: Dreissena mussels pose a significant challenge to infrastructures. One key element contributing to this challenge is the lack of a practical method for large-scale control of populations once they become established throughout a water body. As a result, facilities drawing water from such water bodies are subjected to constant reinfestation. Although concerns exist about environmental impacts of molluscicides, it is the prohibitive total project cost of open-water control programs that currently eliminates them as a mitigation option. Total project cost includes not only the molluscicide and its application throughout the entire water body, but also a myriad of other expenses often required in the overall control program, such as fund raising, administration, regulatory approval, post-treatment mussel mortality monitoring, report writing, etc. The research project reported herein offers a potential solution to this seemingly intractable problem of prohibitively high control program expense. The key to the low cost of this proposed control approach is that it does not require treatment of the entire water body. In contrast to traditional control programs: 1) only a minuscule portion of the infested water body’s volume would be treated (“seeded”) with the control agent; and 2) the control agent would subsequently amplify itself and self-spread throughout the water body. There is only one type of control agent capable of doing that – a live one, a biological control agent. This presentation describes the research conducted in the first year of a multi-year project to find such a control agent. The project is based in Eurasia and specifically designed to find a hypervirulent (i.e., extremely lethal), highly-specific dreissenid parasite that one day (following years of comprehensive environmental safety studies) would be introduced into North American water bodies where it will leave a trail of dead dreissenids in the path of its spread.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:20pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-12) Keys to Successful Dam Removal and River Restoration
AUTHORS: Amy Singler, The Nature Conservancy & American Rivers

ABSTRACT: Dam Removal is arguably the most effective tool we have for restoring river habitat and fish passage. The benefits of many dams may no longer outweigh the significant impacts to fisheries and habitat. Following dam removal we see rapid improvement in water quality, return of riverine species, restored habitat downstream and upstream of the former dam. Dam removal also eliminates maintenance requirements for owners and the potential danger of failure at unmaintained dams during floods. As the rate of dam removal has increased we are seeing positive results to fish and river habitat, and we are learning just what it takes to make projects successful.Dam removal design needs to focus on river processes and account for the dynamic nature of the rivers, while taking into account infrastructure, appropriate sediment management, and threatened and endangered species. Less can often be more when we approach dam removal engineering design. Increasingly, practitioners and regulators are finding the balance of acceptable short-term impacts and long term benefits. Using project examples this presentation will address: 1.) How to recognize and address key issues at dam removal projects in order to design projects that are self-sustaining and create lasting benefits for the suite of aquatic species in the river system; 2.) How to collaborate with regulatory agencies to address concerns of impacts from dam removal construction.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C

4:20pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-13) Michigan EnviroImpact Tool: Collaboration, Cultivation, and Communication to Support Farmers in Forecasting Manure Nutrient Runoff Risk
AUTHORS: Meaghan Gass, Michigan State University Extension and Michigan Sea Grant; Erica Rogers, Michigan State University Extension

ABSTRACT: The Michigan EnviroImpact Tool is a decision support tool for short-term manure application planning that shows daily runoff risk across Michigan. Nutrient runoff from manure application is just one source of harmful algal blooms, but with proper planning, farmers can help keep applied manure nutrients on their fields and reduce nutrient runoff from entering the Great Lakes. The runoff risk forecast is derived from real-time National Weather Service hydrological models. These models rely on precipitation and temperature forecasts as well as simulated snow melt, soil moisture and temperature, and other landscape characteristics. Tool developers used regional testing from edge of field monitoring sites to validate the prediction models. The Michigan EnviroImpact Tool was developed in partnership with the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration National Weather Service, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program, the Michigan State University Institute of Water Research, Michigan Sea Grant and Michigan State University Extension. This tool is part of a regional effort to improve runoff risk decision support tools in the Great Lakes basin supported by the Environmental Protection Agency, Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), and National Weather Service North Central River Forecast Center (NCRFC). In this presentation, we will outline the Michigan EnviroImpact Tool’s modeling system, agricultural best management practices for manure nutrient application, the social marketing campaign to Michigan farmers, and lessons learned from stakeholder engagement strategies.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:20pm - 4:40pm EST
VETERANS MEETING ROOM C/D

4:40pm EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-11) Improving Methods to Understand the Role of Predation on Dreissenid Population Dynamics
AUTHORS: Kevin R. Keretz; Richard T. Kraus, Joseph Schmitt – US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT: Ecological and societal impacts of dreissenid mussels (Dreissena spp.) on Great Lakes ecosystems are well documented, and a better understanding of the mechanisms that cause variation in mussel abundance is needed.  An outstanding question is how much mussel biomass is consumed by predation. To date, attention has mainly been focused on invasive Round Goby (genus species) predation of mussels.  We note that the biomass of native mussel consumers, such as Freshwater Drum (Aplodinotus grunniens), may exceed Round Goby biomass by an order of magnitude in some areas.  Thus, the role of predation on mussel population dynamics may be greater than is currently assumed.  A significant difficulty for investigating mussel consumption by native predators is that mussels in stomachs are often a macerated mix of crushed shell and flesh. This prevents counting and measurement of individual prey items as is often performed in diet studies.  Here, we develop an analysis to convert the crushed shell and flesh mixture found in diets of Freshwater Drum to a simple dry weight of mussel flesh.  We then estimate daily ration as a first step in understanding the impact of Freshwater Drum on mussel populations in Lake Erie.  Our results support evaluation of proposed mussel control methods by improving our knowledge of ecological mechanisms that influence mussel abundance.  

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:40pm EST

(NEW TIME) (SYMPOSIA-11) Efficacy Testing of Mussel Stopper® for Dreissena Mussels
AUTHORS: Lewis Steven Beckham, Barnacle-Blocker, LLC

ABSTRACT: The efficacy in situ of Mussel Stopper®, a brand name for a water insoluble, non-toxic, patented (10,053,584B1), US EPA labeled (89825-1) repellent for Dreissena mussels that can be applied underwater is being measured in a multi-location, multi-year randomized testing program. Testing apparatus consists of a PVC frame with six treatment sets of black ABS plastic coupons attached with cable ties. The ABS plastic coupons have one smooth side and one textured side. Treatments are untreated, component wax only and Mussel Stopper® applied according to labeled directions.  The test lattices are suspended in the water column in locations picked for high incidence of Dreissena mussels. The tests are periodically lifted out of the water and visually rated for percent coverage by the mussels. Since each test has two sides, a total of twelve replications per location are evaluated. After two years of testing, Mussel Stopper® treated coupons averaged 0.60% covered. Component wax only treated coupons averaged 17.7% covered and untreated coupons have averaged 84.8% coverage. Standard deviation is 38.4%. Testing continues, but so far Mussel Stopper® performance is significantly better than the checks.KEY WORDS: Mussel Stopper, Dreissena mussels, applied underwater, US EPA labeled, non-toxic, water insoluble

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM A

4:40pm EST

(SYMPOSIA-12) Restoring Streams, Wetlands, & Floodplains in an Agricultural Landscape
AUTHORS: Amy Brennan, Lake Erie Conservation Director for The Nature Conservancy; Jessica D'Ambrosio, Western Lake Erie Basin Agriculture Director for The Nature Conservancy

ABSTRACT: The Nature Conservancy will share lessons learned and partnerships necessary to restore wetlands, floodplains and streams throughout the Western Lake Erie Basin (WLEB) to reduce nutrient loads to Lake Erie and her tributaries and restore natural infrastructure throughout the Western Lake Erie Basin.  TNC is working with conservation and agricultural community partners to restore natural infrastructure, including wetlands, riparian corridors, and floodplains in the Western Lake Erie Basin to expand, improve, and connect wildlife habitat.  TNC established a goal of restoring 1% of the agricultural acres in the WLEB to natural infrastructure – wetlands, floodplains and riparian corridors that help to manage nutrients and water more effectively.  We have completed initial modeling and mapping to identify the highest nutrient loading areas, best areas for restoring wetlands, and watersheds where stream improvement is likely if nutrients are reduced.  We are currently working with partners on 6 restoration sites from engineering and design to full implementation to convert 500 acres of current agricultural lands to natural wetlands, riparian corridors and floodplains.  In order to reach our goal of restoring 1% (56,000 acres) of agricultural lands, we will continue to engage and support partners and systematically build partnerships to scale up our restoration activities.   This involves a combination of mapping to identify project areas and target areas that will have the most impact on downstream resources, building capacity among our traditional and nontraditional conservation partners and completion of engineering and design for restoration projects.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 4:40pm - 5:00pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM C
 
Wednesday, January 30
 

10:20am EST

(SYMPOSIA-14) Collaboration Between Fish and Wildlife Professionals: Why Does It Matter?
AUTHORS: Emily K Tucker, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT: Fish and wildlife are commonly studied in isolation from each other. However, collaboration between professionals from the fish and wildlife fields is becoming increasingly important in the face of rapid environmental change. The intersection between fish and wildlife science occurs at the aquatic-terrestrial interface, where the transfer of organic and inorganic material between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems results in an ecosystem linkage. This interace, which is usually associated with riparian zones, has become an area of interest due to the reduction of riparian zones as a result of human influence. The current state of the science of the aquatic-terrestrial interface will be reviewed in this talk. Additionally, the potential ways in which fish and wildlife professionals can work together and learn from each other apart from the aquatic-terrestrial interface will be proposed in order to lay the foundation for the symposium talks to follow.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:20am EST

(SYMPOSIA-15) It's Time to Change the Game: How Can Natural Resource Agencies Use New Communication Tools to Stay Relevant?
AUTHORS: Sawyer Briel, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: New technology has given way to a sea change in how many of our users receive and interpret. So, what does this mean for state fish and wildlife agencies? To stay relevant and share our message, we need to adapt and use modern tools in our communications and outreach. Whether through podcasts, vlogs or a number of other tools, there are cost-effective and efficient ways to reach new (and current) users. In turn, partnerships and connections that may not have been possible ten years ago are now a reality, thanks to social media and other new communication tools.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:20am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-16) Agriculture and Wildlife Coexistence in the Midwest United States
AUTHORS: Gary J. Roloff, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT: The Midwest region of the United States supports abundant wildlife and diverse agriculture, with both substantially contributing to regional and national economies and livelihoods. Recreation associated with wildlife has a positive economic impact, estimated to generate over $34 billion annually for 8 Midwestern States. The annual market value of crops and livestock exceed $76 billion. Wildlife often represents a cost to farmers through crop and livestock depredation and food safety risks, but some producers benefit through recreational leasing of their properties. State level wildlife damage data are limited and outdated, but suggests that agricultural losses in the Midwest are significant. Resources available to producers in the Midwest for integrated wildlife damage management (IWDM) vary greatly, but are generally underutilized or ineffectual, and in some cases simply nonexistent. Challenges include political and social barriers to managing valued wildlife species as pests, complex regulatory jurisdiction over wildlife damage control, lack of dedicated personnel assigned to wildlife damage response, and limited IWDM tools. Many IWDM tools do not scale to crop production contexts, provide only limited or temporary efficacy, or are not economically viable. The Agriculture and Wildlife Coexistence symposium will focus on updating our understanding of wildlife damage assessments, mitigation, and philosophies with a focus on wildlife-agriculture co-existence in the Midwest region.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:20am - 10:40am EST
CENTER STREET ROOM D

10:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-14) Wetlands as Common Ground for Fish and Wildlife: Identifying Challenges and Opportunities
AUTHORS: Elisabeth B. Webb, U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, School of Natural Resources, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

ABSTRACT: Wetlands are one of the few ecosystems that provide habitat for both fish and wildlife; therefore, wetland ecosystems are unique in both their ecological communities and the management practices used to promote these communities. As wetlands are biologically and hydrologically diverse, they are highly productive ecosystems, which can meet the life-history needs for a wide a variety of avian, amphibian, mammal and fish species. However, due to the ephemeral nature of wetland habitats and substantial rates of wetland loss across North America, incorporating wetland management practices that provide habitats for and meet the life-history needs of the entire suite of wetland dependent taxa remains a challenge. Here, I will discuss a range of wetland management practices, such as water-level manipulation, prescribed burning and mowing, used to promote specific species or taxa, and the subsequent impacts experienced by other wetland-dependent species. In particular, the phenology of these wetland management practices and hydrogeomorphology of the wetlands in which they are applied, are important considerations in managing wetlands for both fish and wildlife. I will also cover monitoring techniques that can be used to concurrently sample wetlands for both fish and wildlife. Information on fish and wildlife species presence within a wetland is important to not only evaluate the effectiveness of management practices, but to further identify opportunities for future multi-taxa wetland management.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

10:40am EST

(SYMPOSIA-15) Seizing an Opportunity for Engagement with New Stakeholders: Building Wildlife Policy and Agency Relevancy
AUTHORS: Barbara Avers, Amy Derosier – Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: State wildlife agencies (SWAs) have limited opportunities to interact with new constituents, and many times these are unsolicited interactions. Yet these exchanges can provide important opportunities for SWAs to build trust and relevancy with new stakeholders by creating strong processes that include transparency and clear decision space. We will share an example in Michigan where Michigan DNR engaged with a new group of constituents to develop a policy and program to address swimmer’s itch concerns.  Residents of several northern Michigan lakes had serious concerns that swimmer’s itch was negatively impacting local economies and were seeking a solution.  Since previous research indicated that common mergansers (Mergus merganser) are an important host for the parasite that causes swimmer’s itch, there was a desire by several lake associations to control these waterfowl despite concerns by state and federal wildlife agencies and other stakeholders.  Concerned citizens turned to their state legislators for relief and the Michigan DNR was tasked with resolving the issue. The Michigan DNR convened a core team of diverse stakeholders to co-develop a policy and program for common merganser control and used an interest-based approach that recognized multiple and diverse interests in the issue (e.g., lake residents for and against lethal control, tourism industry, wildlife managers, health departments, bird watchers, waterfowl hunters). Through the engagement process, a common understanding of the issue was developed, and the agency was able to better understand and manage stakeholder expectations.  Using this example, we will present challenges and successes of the engagement process, as well as provide tangible recommendations and tools for future stakeholder engagement opportunities.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

10:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-16) Phase 2 Wildlife Management: Addressing the Impacts of Invasive and Overabundant Wildlife: The White-tailed Deer Continuum and Invasive Wild Pig Example
AUTHORS: Kurt VerCauteren, Amy Davis, Kim Pepin – National Wildlife Research Center, USDA/APHIS/Wildlife Services

ABSTRACT: Wildlife managers in many countries around the world are facing similar challenges, which include: a lack of means to address invasive species and locally overabundant native species issues particularly in the face of declining fiscal resources, reduced capacity to achieve management goals, and a need to garner public support in the wake of changing societal values and increasing human populations. Meeting these challenges requires building off the profession’s successes and developing new paradigms and strategies to curtail the negative impacts invasive and overabundant species are having on our natural and agricultural resources. Like our predecessors in conservation succeeded in developing our profession and initiating a movement that led to the recovery of many valued native species, now it is us who face a comparable albeit somewhat opposite mandate. Our charge is to curtail and reverse the further establishment and impacts of invasive and overabundant species. We must not fail, but with just existing methods and decision processes we cannot succeed. Using wild pigs as an example invasive species and white-tailed deer as a corollary locally overabundant native species, we begin to lay out why we believe we have entered a second herculean phase of our profession that is as crucial to the quality of our future as the initiation of conservation was a century ago.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am EST
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:00am EST

(SYMPOSIA-14) Beyond “Donors and Recipients”: Impacts of Species Gains and Losses Reverberate Among Ecosystems Due to Changes in Resource Subsidies
AUTHORS: Scott F Collins, INHS; Colden V Baxter, Idaho State University

ABSTRACT: Pervasive environmental degradation has altered biodiversity at a global scale.  At smaller scales, species extirpations, invasions, and replacements have greatly influenced how ecosystems interact by affecting the exchanges of energy, materials, and organisms.  We examined how species losses and gains affect the exchange of resources (materials and/or organisms) within and among ecosystems.  We specifically consider how changes that occur within an ecosystem may trigger effects that reverberate (e.g., directly, indirectly, via feedbacks) back and forth across ecological boundaries and propagate to multiple habitats or ecosystems connected via exchange of materials and organisms.  Our synthesis provides a cursory overview of ‘openness’ as it has been addressed by community ecologists and then we briefly characterize the conceptual development ecological frameworks used to examine resource exchanges between ecosystems. We then describe multiple case-studies and examine how species losses and gains affect food web structure via resource exchanges between ecosystems, with particular emphasis on effects spanning land-water boundaries. 

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:00am EST

(SYMPOSIA-15) Differential Constraints and Preferences of Anglers and Non-anglers in Urban Areas of Iowa
AUTHORS: Rebecca M. Krogman, Iowa Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Like many other states, Iowa faces dwindling fishing participation and increasing urbanization. To better target urban and suburban anglers, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources created a community fishing program. To guide the program, a general population survey was conducted in Iowa’s urban and suburban communities. Survey questions focused on constraints to fishing participation, characterization of an ideal fishing trip, identification of important amenities and features, and identification of useful outreach programs. Cluster analysis yielded several groups defined by unique sets of constraints, including concern over the safety of eating fish, family friendliness, marginality, lack of basic knowledge, need for mentorship, accessibility, and catch quality and quantity. The importance of various constraints differed by demographic group and by background of the respondent (i.e., whether they grew up in a rural location, urban center, or other). In addition, preferences for an ideal fishing location and educational programs differed by cluster, demographic group, and level of fishing experience. Interestingly, the most common features characterizing an ideal fishing trip were experiential (e.g., being able to fish a location with good water quality) rather than catch-oriented (e.g., being able to catch many or large fish). These data were combined with tapestry data, allowing the characterization of neighborhoods by their probable reception to various fishing opportunities and programs. The results provide guidance to Iowa’s community fishing program for strategic fishery planning and marketing.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:00am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-16) Behavioral Approaches to Mitigating Human-Wildlife Conflict
AUTHORS: Travis L. DeVault, USDA National Wildlife Research Center; Bradley F. Blackwell, USDA National Wildlife Research Center; Esteban Fernandez-Juricic, Purdue University; Eric M. Gese, USDA National Wildlife Research Center; Lynne Gilbert-Norton, Utah State University; Stewart W. Breck, USDA National Wildlife Research Center

ABSTRACT: The study of animal behavior is foundational to solving issues of coexistence between people and wild animals. In this presentation we build on an earlier effort examining the role that behavioral principles play in understanding and mitigating human-wildlife conflict, and delineate gaps in behavioral theory relative to mitigating these conflicts. We consider two different, yet contemporary, examples of human-wildlife conflict: animal-vehicle collisions and carnivore depredation of livestock. Although ostensibly unrelated, both conflict areas share common themes relative to animal behavioral responses to disturbance and perception of risk. The behavioral approaches to conflict management we describe also have application for other types of agricultural damage. We first place the effects on wildlife in the scope of population sustainability, and then examine current research relative to the following three questions: How is behavioral ecology relevant to this particular area of conflict? Are advances toward understanding the mechanisms by which animals process information and make decisions being translated into management methods? How might management efforts be affected over time by individual behaviors, method integration and habituation/sensitization? Only in the last decade have researchers applied an antipredator theoretical framework with sensory ecology to understand aspects of animal responses to vehicle approach, speed and associated stimuli. However, the size and speeds of modern vehicles demand that we improve models and possibly develop novel theoretical frameworks to better predict animal responses to vehicle approach. Within the context of carnivore-livestock depredation, our understanding of individual predator behavior relative to perceived risk and factors contributing to the development of problem individuals will influence the efficacy of the most promising, nonlethal management approaches (e.g. distractive techniques, reproductive inhibition and olfactory barriers). In both cases, successful management is contingent upon a mechanistic understanding of how animals respond to disturbance and the information utilized to assess risk.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am EST
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:20am EST

(SYMPOSIA-14) Is What’s Good for the Bird Good for the Turtle? Landscape-scale Productivity Modeling of Declining Red-headed Woodpeckers, Eastern Box Turtles, and Spotted Turtles in the Oak Openings Region of Ohio and Michigan
AUTHORS: Jeanine M. Refsnider, Henry M. Streby – University of Toledo

ABSTRACT: Studies seeking to conserve habitat critical for the reproductive success of rare species often focus on nesting or spawning habitat.  While such habitats are clearly important components of a species’ ecological requirements, conservation efforts focused solely on habitats used for nesting or spawning, without considering the consequences of oviposition-site choice, are, at best, incomplete.  At worst, inadequate consideration for the fitness outcomes of oviposition-site choice may create ecological traps if animals are attracted to oviposition sites from which juveniles have very low probabilities of survival.  Similarly, management activities such as prescribed burns or selective harvests designed to benefit one species may negatively impact a different species, even if the two species superficially appear to have the same habitat requirements.  These problems illustrate the importance of understanding how multiple life stages of multiple species use a landscape, and how the fitness outcomes of differential habitat use impact population trends.  We are studying three imperiled, flagship species of the Oak Openings Region in Ohio and Michigan: two terrestrial species commonly associated with oak savannah habitat, red-headed woodpeckers and eastern box turtles, and an aquatic species found in flooded prairies and fens, the spotted turtle.  For all three species, we are radio-tracking adults to quantify habitat use and survival; locating and monitoring nests to quantify nest success in different habitat types; and radio-tracking juveniles from those nests to quantify effects of nest habitat on juvenile survival.  From these data, we are creating landscape-scale productivity models to predict how management activity in one habitat patch will impact productivity of all three species in nearby habitat patches.  Our overall goal is to provide land managers with spatially explicit productivity models for terrestrial and aquatic species of high conservation concern that are directly incorporable into adaptive management plans.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:20am EST

(SYMPOSIA-15) Breaking It Down: Communicating Complex Subjects to the People We Serve
AUTHORS: Beth Fults, Kathleen Lavey – Michigan Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: Professional marketers and communicators spend their careers finding the right images and words to sell a product or service, share news, or to help people learn – many times all at once. This is an important job, and in science-based worlds, carefully chosen and easily understood words are especially vital. Oftentimes the subject matter that needs to be shared with the public – those who are the true owners of our natural resources – is the most difficult to understand outside the world of biologists. This symposium will provide real examples of successful communication and marketing campaigns the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has spearheaded -- including a current television, digital, radio and outreach campaign that is reaching urban areas in Michigan to explain the importance of forest management -- advice, and expertise on how science professionals can best work with communications experts to get messages out to the masses. 

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:20am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-16) Identifying and Managing Wildlife Damage to Forests
AUTHORS: Jimmy Taylor, USDA National Wildlife Research Center

ABSTRACT: Forests are integral components of the global climate, yet the material products that trees provide are essential to sustain human quality of life (e.g., paper, fuel, lumber, poles, fruit, etc.). Growing healthy forests requires years of planning, investment, and adaptive management. Wildlife impacts on regenerating forests following wildfire or harvesting can be extensive. Wildlife damage by ungulates, rodents, and rabbits during the first five years of tree growth greatly hinder reforestation efforts following wildfire or harvest, while foraging by other mammals such as bears, beavers, and porcupines damage mature trees after stands have gained significant economic value. The costs associated with silvicultural applications are highly variable as are the costs of preventing wildlife damage to trees. Furthermore the cumulative effects of combined management techniques are unknown in forestry management. Allowing wildlife damage can result in 1) decreased volume and revenue at harvest, or 2) extending harvest rotation lengths of stands, simultaneously extending long-term interest payments and decreasing net returns. We will describe methods to identify species-specific damage to trees and methods to reduce damage, including repellents, exclusion, and behavioral modification. We also will describe pros and cons of these methods. Applying appropriate techniques and improving cost-benefit analyses will provide forest managers with knowledge to refine forest management strategies.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:20am - 11:40am EST
CENTER STREET ROOM D

11:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-14) Cross-boundary Food Webs in Stream-riparian Ecosystems: Implications for Conservation and Management
AUTHORS: S. Mažeika P. Sullivan, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Streams and their adjacent riparian zones are increasingly recognized as structurally and functionally linked through exchanges of energy, organic matter, and organisms. In particular, recent advances in our understanding of stream-riparian ecosystems have underscored the importance of aquatic-to-terrestrial prey in providing critical energetic subsidies to terrestrial riparian consumers, ranging from arthropods, to birds, to mammals. Contaminants can also move from aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems through these same food-web pathways. Here, I overview a decade of research in the Scioto River basin of Ohio that documents variability in aquatic-to-terrestrial nutritional subsidies and contaminants to terrestrial consumers across a gradient of urban-to-natural landscapes, and in small streams to larger rivers. Using aerial insectivorous birds – which are experiencing serious populations declines across the guild – as a case study, I provide a detailed example of how this research is being used to bridge aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in specific conservation and management contexts.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm EST
HOPE BALLROOM A

11:40am EST

(SYMPOSIA-15) Learning from Michigan’s Women Anglers Through Community Engagement and Photography
AUTHORS: Erin M. Burkett, Michigan Technological University; Amanda Popovich, Lake Superior State University

ABSTRACT: Recreational fishing is an important part of Michigan’s economy and outdoor culture, and women’s participation in recreational fishing is on the rise. Providing fishing opportunities for all stakeholders, including women, requires fisheries management agencies to gain a better understanding how women are recruited into fishing, what draws them to fishing, and what aspects of the sport they enjoy the most. This includes information about their experiences, values, and preferences regarding fishing and fisheries more broadly. Previous studies found that men and women sometimes ascribe different values and meanings to recreational fishing, but the underlying gender-based reasons for these differences, and how they relate to the underrepresentation of women in recreational fishing, has not been explored. Gendered expectations and related social processes are linked to both how natural resource management operates and what outdoor recreation activities are perceived as appropriate for women. This study’s purpose is to use a community and participant-centered method called Photovoice to better understand Michigan’s women anglers. I ask the following research questions: 1) Why do Michigan women fish?; 2) What does fishing mean to them?; and 3) What experiences or perceptions shape their initial decision to fish and continued participation in recreational fishing? Photovoice allows participants to record their experiences, values, and opinions through pictures and develop personal narratives during facilitated group discussions. This approach can invoke explanations of social processes that are inaccessible to more traditional social research methods like surveys. In this talk I will present the study findings including the participants’ own photographs, the major themes that emerged from their experiences and conversations with other participants, and how the participants decided to use this project as a means of organizing some policy-related action.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm EST
HOPE BALLROOM B

11:40am EST

(CANCELLED) (SYMPOSIA-16) Nonlethal Tools for Managing Wolf Predation on Livestock
AUTHORS: Eric M. Gese, Julie K. Young, Stewart W. Breck – USDA-WS-National Wildlife Research Center

ABSTRACT: Abstract: Predation on livestock by wolves (Canis lupus) is a growing issue as wolf populations continue to recover in the northern Rocky Mountains and Great Lakes region. Nonlethal methods to mitigate depredation events are more publicly acceptable than lethal removal and promotes local community support. In addition, nonlethal techniques recognize the value of individual animals and maintains stability of the social system within a wolf pack. We describe various nonlethal tools and methods being evaluated and utilized to reduce wolf predation on livestock. Advantages and disadvantages of each technique are examined, and current research findings are presented. Management of depredations on livestock will be necessary for continued coexistence of wolves, humans, and livestock.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 11:40am - 12:00pm EST
CENTER STREET ROOM D