Annual Report of the Great Lakes
1984 News Briefs
Commissioner Ken Loftus retired after 12 years of service as commissioner.
He was chair for 6 of those years.
The Habitat Advisory Board operated for the first time as an official GLFC
entity in 1984.
The commission became a sustaining member of the International Association
for Great Lakes Research.
Canadian Section: U.S. Section:
Patrick S. Chamut William P. Horn, Vice-Chair
Kenneth H. Loftus, Chair W. Mason Lawrence
Henry A. Regier James Ridenour
Gary C. Vernon Claude Ver Duin
Sea Lamprey Management and Research
The commission created a Sterile Male Release Task Force to coordinate
studies, select test sites, and propose funding levels to determine the
feasibility of using sterile male lampreys in extended field trials.
Dr. Bill Beamish of the University of Guelph chaired a commission meeting
to evaluate the potential of hormones for sea lamprey management.
The commission decided to conclude a pheromone research program by Monell
Chemical Services Center if a sea lamprey male sex attractant could not
be identified by 1985.
A Sea Lamprey Barrier Dam Evaluation Task Force of US/Canadian agents,
MDNR, and secretariat was established.
The commission encouraged reliance on fish community goals as a basis for
integrated sea lamprey management.
Fishery Management, Environment and Research
The commission funded research to develop a field technique for distinguishing
wild from hatchery origin lake trout.
The commission requested that BOTE evaluate the impacts of exotic fish
species introduced to the Great Lakes.
Dr. Joe Koonce (Case Western Reserve) began refinement of sea lamprey-lake
trout adaptive management models.
The commission requested and received the assistance of the USFWS Leetown
lab in developing diagnostic techniques for bacterial kidney disease (BKD).
The commission took greater steps to support lake trout rehabilitation
by agreeing to give the issue higher priority in the budget, by encouraging
lake committees to incorporate research into their management plans, by
encouraging tribal participation within the existing committee structure,
and by agreeing to address all lake trout concerns within the context of
the technical committee structure.
Through commission-sponsored research, Dr. Ruth Phillips (Uof Wisconsin)
discovered the sex chromosome in lake trout. The commission provided funds
for the second year of a chromosome banding study.
Dr. Bill Beamish (U of Guelph) received funds for a 2-year maintenance
of the Cyclostomata Bibliography.
The commission supported Dr. John Forney's (Cornell U) study of response
of fish in Oneida Lake to sea lamprey control.
Recommendations for Standardizing the Reporting of Sea Lamprey Marking
Data, by Eshenroder and Koonce (SP 84-1).
Strategies for Rehabilitation of Lake Trout in the Great Lakes: Proceedings
of a Conference on Lake Trout Research [CLAR], by Eshenroder, Poe and Olver.
Analysis of the Response to the Use of "Adaptive Environmental Assessment
Methodology" by the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, by Minns, Cooley and
Forney. (SP 84-3)
Committee Action, Resolutions, and Reports
The Council of Lake Committees endorsed the task force review of
lake trout technical plans, and noted that additional work on evaluating
goals and objectives
and criteria for establishing stocking recommendations would be very useful.
The Lake Erie Committee reported that sea lamprey predation in Lake
Erie seriously threatened lake trout rehabilitation. The committee's Lake
Trout Task Group was urged to complete a lake trout management plan so
that consideration of a sea lamprey management plan could proceed.
The Lake Huron Committee reported that whitefish were at historical
highs in Lake Huron. The committee also reported wounding rates in southern
Lake Huron were higher across all size classes of lake trout. The highest
wounding rates for whitefish were observed in the North Channel followed
by an area just south of Manitoulin Island.
The Lake Michigan Committee reported that whitefish were near historic
high levels. The committee noted that sea lamprey wounding rates declined
to low levels in northern Wisconsin and southern Wisconsin-Illinois. Declines
in wounding rates were correlated with recent stream treatments.
The Lake Ontario Committee recommended that emphasis be placed on
a comprehensive evaluation in Lake Ontario of Oneida Lake lampricide actions.
The committee observed that Seneca Lake lake trout may escape sea lamprey
due to pelagic habits and that their relative survival may be based on
the presence of a more accessible food source such as Lake Superior strain
lake trout. The committee reported that New York and Ontario would try
to marry their fish management plans as envisioned by the Joint Strategic
Plan for Management of Great Lakes Fisheries (SGLFMP).
The Lake Superior Committee stated that the major challenge with
respect to lake trout was to make allocation agreements and to allocate
fewer lake trout for consumptive uses.
Board of Technical Experts
Reported that it planned to streamline procedures for reviewing research
proposals and for identifying emerging issues. The board reported that
it saw potential in interdisciplinary initiatives underway at the time.
Great Lakes Fish Disease Control Committee
Reported progress in developing options for coordinated control of Bacterial
Kidney Disease. The committee provided the commission with an updated summary
of fish and egg importation, transportation, and stocking permit requirements
for agencies in the Great Lakes. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission,
in consultation with the committee, decided to terminate plans for release
into Lake Erie of coho salmon raised in a watershed contaminated with whirling
Habitat Advisory Board
The new Habitat Advisory Board formalized its membership and completed
its terms of reference. The duties of the board included: identification
of current and emerging issues that may impede achievement of fishery goals;
proposing strategies, programs, methods, or criteria for habitat protection,
rehabilitation, development, or conservation; fostering the development
of habitat assessment techniques for fish communities; promoting the formulation
of habitat evaluation and management plans by the lake committees; and
developing an integrated habitat policy and management approach among fishery
and other resource management agencies and interest groups.
The commission responded affirmatively to the suggestion of NOAA's National
Marine Pollution Program Office that the GLFC and NOAA cooperate in determining
future pollution research emphasis in the Great Lakes.
The commission made available the slide/tape shows Great Lakes Invader
and Bringing Back the Great Lakes.
The commission received the following funds from the United States and
Canada (in U.S. dollars):
UnitedStates Canada, Total
Total $4,354,000 $2,204,889 $6,558,889
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