Oswego, NY — New York Sea Grant and the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) have issued a series of seven fact sheets focused on the preferred habitats, risks to and tips for improving habitats for three species of fish: Northern pike, muskellunge (musky) and walleye. The series, created for SUNY-ESFÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ã¢â‚¬Å“Conservation Strategy for Enhancement of St. Lawrence River Native Fish PopulationsÃ¢â‚¬Â project is posted online at www.nysgextension.org.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Recent studies have improved our understanding of the relationships between fish populations and their habitats. This understanding of such factors as the water depth and temperature, bottom types, and oxygen levels needed for each stage of a fishÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s life cycle supports successful fish habitat improvement projects,Ã¢â‚¬Â says series author and New York Sea Grant Fisheries Specialist David B. MacNeill.
Thousand Islands Biological Station Director Dr. John M. Farrell, an associate professor of SUNY-ESF associate professor of aquatic ecology, contributed research on fish populations in the St. Lawrence River to the fact sheet series. He is part of a research team that has developed new fish habitat study tools to determine just how much spawning habitat is available for Northern pike, musky and walleye.
The fact sheet series identifies the type of threats to Northern pike, musky and walleye habitat, emphasizes the need for agency-landowner collaboration, and identifies funding sources for collaborative projects.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under the Fish Enhancement, Mitigation and Research Fund provided project funding. Other project partners include the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Geological Survey, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Save the River and Thousand Islands Land Trust. #