Fishery Evaluations: A Valuable Management Tool
EnviroScience biologists have extensive experience conducting full-scale fishery evaluations from small private ponds to Lake Erie. ES has sampled over 4,000 locations throughout the United States generating an exceptional knowledge base of the biology and ecology of fish communities. Three factors are needed to sustain a viable fishery in any system:
- Habitat- water quality, cover, plants, depth, substrate
- Food- invertebrates, bait fish, plankton
- Reproduction- adult survival, spawning habitat
An analysis of these factors in combination with abundance and diversity data is an excellent method of assessing the fishery and lake health. Fisheries are sampled using a variety of techniques including electrofishing, hoop netting, seining, gill netting, Global Positioning System technology, and Geographic Information System software. Often times, several methods are used simultaneously to ensure adequate sampling in all habitats. For example, hoop nets target bottom dwelling species sometimes missed by electrofishing.
EnviroScience personnel analyze the data to assess fish population dynamics and health, which are used to develop best management plans for stabilizing or improving the fishery. Recommendations may include stocking and habitat improvement. Our pro-active approach encourages close work and communication with the client, lake association, and other principal stakeholders. Each project is tailored to the specific needs and goals of the lake.
- Fishery evaluation – fish survey followed by a detailed report containing comprehensive data analysis, imagery generation, and management recommendations where applicable
- Nuisance species management – removal of unwanted fish species such as carp, large gizzard shad, etc.
- Fish surveys includes the collection of fish for various purposes such as tissue analysis or consumption advisories.
- Bathymetric surveys using the latest in Global Positioning Systems
- Habitat evaluation and improvement recommendations and design
- Comprehensive water quality sampling and lake diagnostics
- Qualitative and quantitative analysis or zooplankton, phytoplankton, and ichthyoplankton