Annual Report of the Great Lakes Fishery
1990 News Brief
The Sea Lamprey Integration Committee (SLIC) began meeting in 1990. SLIC
was established as a means to advise the commission on implementing the
Integrated Management of Sea Lamprey (IMSL) program.
Canadian Section: U.S. Section:
F. William H. Beamish James Cady
Paul Sutherland, Vice-Chair Charles K. Dutcher, alternate
George Whitney Constance B. Harriman
Vacancy Charles C. Krueger, Chair
Sea Lamprey Management and Research
The commission established a new research fund for alternative controls
to focus on the development of and alternatives to lampricides in its control
Lamprey endurance in velocity chutes was tested. The research indicated
that since lampreys could not attach when fatigued, a swift current would
wash them back downstream.
Congress appropriated $1.3 million for construction of a sterile male treatment
facility, a pipeline extension, and the Ocqueoc River Barrier In-stream
Testing Facility (ORBITF) at the Hammond Bay Biological Station.
The commission funded Dr. John Holmes' (U of Toronto) study of sea lamprey
Fishery Management, Environment, and Research
The commission sponsored a workshop to develop study proposals on compliance
and effectiveness of Canadian Great Lakes Ballast Water Control Guidelines.
The commission co-sponsored (with the IJC) a workshop on options to prevent
Dr. Joe Koonce (Case Western Reserve) and Dr. Mike Jones (OMNR) received
funds to develop a framework for evaluating the risks of managing artificially-maintained
fisheries, thereby helping managers move to more sustainable configurations.
The goal was to develop computer-driven decision support systems that focus
on the ecology of Lakes Michigan and Ontario (Sustainability of Intensively
Managed Populations in Lake Erie; SIMPLE).
The commission authorized funds for a computer program to ensure cooperators
an opportunity to maintain an accessible current, and reliable repository
of salmonid stocking data for use in fishery management, IMSL, and forage
Effects of the Lampricide [TFM] on Macroinvertebrate Populations in a Small
Stream, by H.J. Lieffers. (TR 55)
Resistance to [TFM] in Sea Lamprey, by Scholefield and Seelye. (TR 56)
Effects of Changes in Dissolved Oxygen on the Toxicity of [TFM] to Sea
Lamprey and Rainbow Trout, by Seelye and Scholefield. (TR 56)
Fish Community Objectives for Lake Superior, edited by T.R. Busiahn. (SP
International Position Statement and Evaluation Guidelines for Artificial
Reefs in the Great Lakes, edited by J.E. Gannon. (SP 90-2)
Lake Superior: The State of the Lake in 1989, edited by M.J. Hansen. (SP
An Ecosystem Approach to the Integrity of the Great Lakes in Turbulent
Times, edited by Edwards and Regier. (SP 90-4)
Exotic Species and the Shipping Industry: The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence
Ecosystem at Risk. GLFC and IJC.
Committee Action, Resolutions, and Reports
The Council of Lake Committees called upon agencies to provide input
to the U.S. Coast Guard (for inclusion in their official report to Congress)
regarding concerns and the need for urgent restrictions for controlling
ballast water discharge. The council asked the Habitat Advisory Board to
develop a draft policy on pen-rearing of salmonids in the Great Lakes.
The Lake Erie Committee undertook initiatives to refine the estimate
of natural mortality rate of walleye (which strongly influenced calculations
of the annual total allowable catch) by implementing a large interagency
tagging study. The committee noted data indicating a dramatic improvement
in the survival of adult lake trout in response to sea lamprey control
The Lake Huron Committee reported that the known harvest of all
species combined from Lake Huron totaled 11.5 million pounds in 1990, well
below the sustained historic harvest of 18 million pounds. The committee
stressed that lake trout rehabilitation in Lake Huron could not progress,
regardless of controls on fisheries, with existing lamprey predation, and,
thus, called for immediate action to control sea lampreys from the St.
The Lake Michigan Committee intensified efforts to gather information
on the life history of chinook salmon, and all agencies agreed to mark
their stocked chinook for the next three years to determine contributions
of natural reproduction and various releases to the sport fisheries. The
committee supported the development of a combined broodstock of Green Lake
strain lake trout from four remaining lots of fish, as this strain has
ancestry in southern Lake Michigan.
The Lake Ontario Committee reported that stocked and indigenous
predators were at encouraging levels, sea lamprey numbers were depressed,
and forage species appeared to be abundant. The committee reaffirmed that
the restoration of extirpated species in Lake Ontario remained a high priority
for management agencies. The detrimental alteration, destruction, and loss
of fisheries habitat in Lake Ontario continued to concern the committee.
The Lake Superior Committee produced Fish Community Objectives for
Lake Superior that called for the rehabilitation of herring stocks, the
achievement of a sustained annual yield of lake trout and other salmonids,
the achievement of a 90% reduction in sea lamprey abundance by 2010, and
a no net loss of habitats supporting Lake Superior fisheries.
Board of Technical Experts
Developed research priorities based upon three visions: 1) healthy populations
of self-sustaining native fish species supplemented with judicious stocking;
2) integrated sea lamprey management programs that support Fish Community
Objectives; and 3) strengthening effective institutional and stakeholder
Great Lakes Fish Disease Control Committee
Indicated that epizootic epitheliotropic disease (EED) and bacterial kidney
disease (BKD) continued to be of concern to agency fish hatcheries and
urged the commission to continue its support and funding for disease research.
Noted that Lake Michigan chinook mortality continued for the third year
in a row. BKD was involved, but the question remained as to whether there
was a co-infection with some as yet undetected agent.
Channel catfish virus (CCV) disease was documented for the first time in
the Great Lakes.
Habitat Advisory Board
In an effort to supply fishery managers with a large database of fish community
habitat suitability criteria for developing the lake committees' fish community
goals, HAB contracted for the provision of the Habitat Requirement Profiles
for Selected Great Lakes Fish: A Literature Review and Summary.
Encouraged the state, provincial, and federal fishery agencies to participate
in the Remedial Action Plan (RAP) process.
The commission provided funds to support a "Stop the Invaders" campaign
at the Minnesota State fair.
The commission received the following funds from the United States and
Canada (in U.S. dollars):
United States Canada Total
Total $6,441,000 $3,283,440 $9,724,440
GLFC Home Page