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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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Poster [clear filter]
Tuesday, January 29
 

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P41) Cheese vs. Worms: A Comparison of Minnow Trap Bait Types for Assessing Nearshore Fish Communities
AUTHORS. Scott Jackson, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences; Edward Roseman, US Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Jason Fischer, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences; Stacey Ireland, US Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Stacy Provo, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences

ABSTRACT. Minnow traps are a common type of passive fishing gear that can be deployed in a variety of habitats to assess local fish communities. While some studies investigated the efficiency and biases associated with this type of sampling, few studies have assessed the effects of baiting minnow traps with different types of bait. As part of a shoreline restoration project, we conducted bi-weekly minnow trap sampling from spring to fall 2016 in the St. Clair River. Minnow traps were set from the shore in groups of five parallel to the shoreline at 12 different sites along the river. Each trap was baited with Colby Jack cheese one night of the week, and Nightcrawler worms (Lumbricus terrestris) the other. Traps were set late afternoon to early evening and were fished for an average of 13.9 hours/night. Traps baited with cheese caught 1497 individuals belonging to 23 species and traps baited with worms caught 901 individuals from 22 species. Four species were only caught by cheese baited traps and three species were only caught by worm baited traps. Catch-Per-Unit-Effort (CPUE) was calculated for the number of fish caught at a site over a 12-hour sampling period. CPUE of cheese baited traps was higher (6.5 Fish/12 Hours) than worm baited traps (4.1 Fish/12 Hours) (p-value <0.01). Mean species richness (MSR), calculated as the average number of species caught per sampling event, was greater for traps baited with cheese (1.91 species/night) than for traps with worms (1.59 species/night) (p-value<0.01). Based on CPUE and MSR, cheese catches more individuals and more species than worms, however, using both bait types may provide a more complete measure of species richness by catching species attracted to only one type of bait.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P44) Effects of Sedation Techniques on Stress Responses in Bluegill Sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus)
AUTHORS. Margaret Thomas, Eastern Illinois University; Anabela Maia, Rhode Island College; Eloy Martinez, Eastern Illinois University; Robert Colombo, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT. The process of sedating fish is necessary for a variety of procedures in research and within field or laboratory settings. Information regarding chemical sedatives, such as MS-222 (99.5% tricaine methanesulfate), suggests that it is often insufficient for field use due to extensive recovery time and withdrawal. Subsequently, alternatives to chemical sedatives are being explored, of which electronarcosis is a popular option. Electronarcosis applies particularly to “immediate-release” situations, as it is found to have rapid recovery times and minimal lasting effects on fish. Few studies provide an overview of the effects of sedation on its subjects, and large gaps remain with regard to the species-specific responses to the treatment. Therefore, we sought to compare the short-term physiological effects of bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) subjected to electronarcosis and MS-222 sedation techniques. We hypothesize that sedation achieved by electronarcosis will provide an overall decreased stress response in its subjects. Bluegill sunfish were exposed to species-specific doses of MS-222 or electrical stunning to achieve complete sedation. Immediately following sedation, basal metabolic rates of fish were monitored with indirect calorimetry. Basal metabolic rates were employed as indicators of aerobic physiological activity on fish. Cortisol levels in blood were assayed after metabolic screening and gathered over a period of 1, 2, 4, and 6 hours following treatment on each group and compared to a pre-treatment control. Plasma cortisol levels and metabolic rates are expected to have an overall decreased value in subjects treated with electrosedation, deeming it a more practical alternative to chemical treatments.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P45) Influence of Physical Processes on Transport and Persistence of eDNA from the Invasive Round Goby (Neogobious melanostomus)
AUTHORS. Meredith B. Nevers, Murulee N. Byappanahalli, Kasia Kelly – U.S. Geological Survey; Charles C. Morris, Joshua Dickey – National Park Service

ABSTRACT. Environmental DNA (eDNA) is being explored in a variety of fishery sciences applications: early detection of invasive species, population estimations, or whole community composition.  Questions remain, however, about factors that influence the reliability of eDNA for detecting recent occupation of habitats by a given species.  It is unclear how physical and biological factors (settling, resuspension, dispersion, DNA stability and decay) influence estimations of eDNA concentration.  In a series of field and mesocosm experiments, we examined the transport, accumulation, and persistence of eDNA from the invasive round goby (Neogobius melanostomus).  Experiment 1: caged fish (n=30) were placed in a stream devoid of round goby, and water (1L) and sediment samples (~20g) were collected over 24 hours along a 120-m stretch of the stream.  Sampling continued for 24 hours after fish were removed. Experiment 2: round goby (n=5/tank) were placed in laboratory aquaria, and water (150mL) and sediment (~20g) were collected over 21 days plus another 28 days post-fish removal.  DNA was extracted from all samples, and qPCR was used to target DNA sequences (cytochrome oxidase I gene, COI, specific to round goby).  Results indicated that goby eDNA was readily transported downstream, with signals detected at all sites, but the signal disappeared rapidly after fish removal.  Similarly, eDNA was regularly detected in lab aquaria, but the signal disappeared rapidly in both matrices after fish removal.  Results show that eDNA acts conservatively as an indicator, and detection of an eDNA target would likely indicate recent occupation by the species.  eDNA technology holds great potential for species detection, including those that are hard-to-capture or less abundant in aquatic habitats.  Further research is needed to evaluate resuspension and shoreline interactions in the Great Lakes and how DNA responds to other environmental processes and conditions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P38) Validating Daily Otolith Increment Deposition in Aquarium-Reared Juvenile Walleye, Sander Vitreus
AUTHORS. Kaitlin Ulin, L. Zoe Almeida – Ohio State University; Taylor A. Brown, Cornell University; David Dippold, Stuart A. Ludsin, Elizabeth A. Marshall – Ohio State University

ABSTRACT. The daily age and growth rate of a juvenile fish can provide useful information about early life conditions. Researchers frequently take advantage of the fact that fish otoliths accrue daily rings, which can be counted and measured, to estimate ages and growth rates.  Previous studies have indicated, however, that aging juvenile walleye, Sander vitreus, with otolith increments past 42 d is difficult, if not impossible. This difficulty is partially due to the development of accessory primordia (a second growth plane on the otolith), a problem exacerbated by otolith preparation techniques that obscure rings on different planes. Herein, we examined the accuracy of aging walleye before and past 42 d using known-age, aquarium-reared walleye and a modified otolith preparation technique. Our otolith preparation technique involved gently grinding the convex side of the otolith in three planes: the core, the middle, and the edge. By grinding on the convex side, we removed material along a curved axis to allow visibility of rings from the hatch-check to the most recently laid ring and, therefore, allowed us to age the fish from hatch to capture. Walleye were hatched on April 20, 2018 (± 3 d) and reared for 96 d; sagittal otoliths were collected on days 10, 41, 56, 79, and 96 post-hatch. Otoliths were aged by three readers. We are comparing reader estimates of ages to known ages and analyzing among- and within-reader error to determine if error lies within readers’ interpretation of rings, or if accessory primordia inhibit clear interpretation of daily rings past 42 d. Future experiments manipulating temperature will be conducted to confirm if our findings are consistent under different environmental conditions known to affect otolith growth patterns.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P39) An Evaluation of Angler Use of Fish Attractors in Ohio Reservoirs
AUTHORS. Kevin S. Page, Christopher R. Aman, Matt A. Hangsleben, Matthew D. Wolfe – Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT. For over a decade, the Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) has added fish attractors to reservoirs to improve angler fishing success. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the addition of attractors has effectively improved fishing. However, a more quantitative evaluation of the value of adding fish attractors to reservoirs given the costs associated with their deployment, would be useful. We evaluated angler use of attractors by analyzing the spatial distribution of anglers interviewed during on-the-water angler creel surveys conducted during 2014–2016 at 12 reservoirs that had fish attractors.  A Chi-square analysis was used to determine if distributions of anglers showed a preference for areas with fish attractors versus those without.  Anglers were also queried in 2018 at five reservoirs to gauge their levels of awareness and usage of fish attractors, and to collect angler opinions on the effectiveness of attractors at improving fishing. At 4 of 12 reservoirs, boat anglers showed a propensity to use attractors more frequently than expected, whereas shore anglers showed a greater propensity at seven of the reservoirs. It is unclear whether this represents purposeful targeting of attractors by anglers or a function of where attractors were deployed (e.g., near popular fishing locations). The percentage of anglers that were aware of and targeted fish attractors appeared generally low (5–32%).  However, these anglers were generally positive regarding the effectiveness of attractors as 44–89% felt that attractors improved fishing. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P40) Assessment of Thermal Discharge on Reservoir Fish Community on Turtle Creek Reservoir in Sullivan County, Indiana
AUTHORS. Cole P. Baird, Ball State University; Kevin A. Gaston, Paul D. McMurray, Jr., James R. Stahl – Indiana Department of Environmental Management

ABSTRACT. In 2018, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management conducted a fish community assessment of Turtle Creek Reservoir, Sullivan County, Indiana to determine the impact of a permitted thermal discharge from a nearby coal-fired electrical generating station on the reservoir’s fish population.  Six randomly selected 500 meter near-shore transects were sampled by night-time electrofishing, including just downstream of the discharge point to the reservoir, refugia, and near the dam at the opposite end of the reservoir. The collected data are being used to help further the understanding of the response of these biotic communities to thermal discharges, and to determine if “No Harm” has occurred to the Balanced Indigenous Community due to anthropogenic input of thermal loads.   

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P42) Comparison of Three Age-estimation Methods Using Scales and Otoliths for Bloater (Coregonus hoyi) in Lake Michigan
AUTHORS. Kristy Phillips, Timothy O'Brien, Steve Farha – USGS Great Lakes Science Center

ABSTRACT. Bloater (Coregonus hoyi) are valuable as both a commercial species and endemic prey fish in the upper Great Lakes. Reliable age estimates are critical to population models and sound management of bloater stocks. A reference set of 128 bloater were used to compare scale and sagittal otolith methods with the goals to compare age estimates between structures and to increase precision in age estimates within and among readers. Scales were pressed onto acetate slides and read using a microfiche projector, while sagittal otoliths were thin-sectioned using precision saws. Otolith ages were estimated using microscopy and static, 2D images. There was good agreement between microscopy and static 2D image estimates between and among readers and high variability in the average coefficient of variation (ACV) between and among readers with scale reads. In general, scale ages were estimated to be lower overall when compared to the microscope and image estimates across all readers. Otolith microscope reads using transmitted light had the highest percent agreement among the three readers (65.4%, 54.3%, and 61.4%, 3 reads each). The otolith structure had a lower ACV (range = 4.3 – 7.6%) among the three readers when compared to scales (range = 7.4 – 12.1%). When comparing otolith microscope and 2D image estimates, results varied per reader, however ACV remained under the recommended 10% CV for each reader regardless of otolith structure aging method. These results may be influenced by reader experience, but this study has demonstrated that sagittal otoliths are superior to scales for estimating age of Lake Michigan bloater. To achieve higher precision and agreement within and among readers it is recommended that sagittal otoliths be used to estimate bloater ages.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P43) Effectiveness of Zote Soap Baited Trotlines in Assessing Channel Catfish and Aquatic Turtle Bycatch
AUTHORS. Ryen Kemp, Coty Prunest, Colton McKivitz, Hae Kim, Quinton Phelps – West Virginia University

ABSTRACT. Biologists commonly use Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap as bait in tandem hoop-nets to effectively sample for channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus. Previous studies suggest that Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap is effective in reducing aquatic turtle-bycatch. This is crucial due to the high mortality rate of aquatic turtles as bycatch for both hoop nets and trotlines. However, there are very few studies that have been done to evaluate aquatic turtle bycatch on Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap baited trotlines. Additionally, no studies have evaluated the effectiveness of different colors of Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap to assess catch rates of both channel catfish and aquatic turtle bycatch. Our trotlines will be set overnight, soaking for twenty-four hours, on the Monongahela River. Each line will consist of twenty-five 2/0 sized hooks. Each hook will be baited with a piece of Zote<sup>TM</sup> soap that is approximately the size of a nickel. To eliminate a bias in color, each hook will be randomly assigned a specific Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap color, which will consist of either: pink, white, or blue. Preliminary data suggest that pink Zote<sup>TM </sup>Soap is more efficient and effective than white or blue Zote<sup>TM</sup> soap. Our sampling sites will be determined by randomly selecting areas with large scale river features or macrohabitats (i.e., main channel, inlet, and backwaters) in the Monongahela River. During our study we seek out to determine if sampling with Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap baited trotlines will effectively sample channel catfish populations while also reducing aquatic turtle bycatch and evaluate the catch rates of multiple colors of Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P46) Precision of Age Estimates Obtained from Sectioned and Whole Bluegill Otoliths
AUTHORS. Jeff Koch, Ben Neely, Connor Chance-Ossowski – Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism

ABSTRACT. We estimated age of 257 Bluegills collected from Kansas impoundments using whole and sectioned otoliths.  Three readers independently aged each structure and age estimates were compared to evaluate bias between readers and structures.  In general, agreement between readers was high for both whole and sectioned otoliths.  Between-reader agreement was greater than 92% for all reader comparisons for both preparation techniques and mean coefficient of variation (CV) values were less than 5% for all between reader comparisons.  Exact agreement of whole and sectioned otoliths was 82.8% to 85.2%, depending on reader.  When comparing whole and sectioned otolith ages, significant deviation from the 1:1 line of equivalency on age bias plots was only present for one reader and age combination, which was age 0 and was likely due to inconsistencies in identification of the first annulus.  In general, both preparation techniques for bluegill otoliths yielded precise age estimates.  No trends in between-reader or between-structure bias were evident with increasing purported age.  Due to the additional time and cost of mounting and sectioning Bluegill otoliths, we recommend using whole otoliths to estimate bluegill age up to age 8.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques