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Evaluating Colored LED Strobe Lights for Use in the Behavioural Guidance of Sea Lamprey
C.K. Elvidge1,2, C.H. Reid1, and S.J. Cooke1
1Fish Ecology and Conservation Physiology Laboratory, Department of Biology, Carleton University, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Ottawa ON Canada K1S 5B6
2Current address: Department of Biology, University of Eastern Finland, PO Box 111 Joensuu Finland 80101
During the last century, sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) have caused drastic population declines in many fish species in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Integrated pest management solutions relying less on chemical lampricides and more on alternative control methods (e.g. trapping, barriers) are receiving increased focus as means of reducing both sea lamprey populations and collateral impacts on non-target species. The use of LED strobe lights is a new method of behavioural guidance in fish that may have the potential to attract and/or repel lamprey. Here we tested whether several colours and strobing frequencies of LED light could be used to elicit attraction and/or avoidance responses in spawning-phase migratory adult sea lamprey in y-maze dichotomous choice behavioural assays. In one experiment, we measured attraction/avoidance responses to white, green, or yellow LED light strobing at 1 or 10 Hz. Overall, strobing frequency was the most important factor in choice between lit/unlit branches of the y-maze, with white and green light at 1 Hz eliciting the greatest levels of attraction. However, differences between male and female responses to various combinations of colour and strobing frequency were significant, suggesting that further study focusing on differences in light guidance and migration behavior between males and females is required. In a second experiment, we compared success of pairing green light strobing at 1 Hz with a funnel trap to an unlit control trap treatment.