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 Seasonal Changes in Movement and Habitat Utilization of Largemouth Bass in Lake Eugenia

 

We are conducting a 2 year telemetry project in Lake Eugenia to assess the effects of invasive species, water-level fluctuations and other environmental factors on habitat quality and recruitment of Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides). The main objective of this study is to provide valuable baseline data, which are essential for monitoring and tracking changes in the lake.  This will facilitate comparisons and assessments of future restoration and conservation initiatives and to measure potential environmental impacts. Thirty Largemouth Bass were caught with boat electro-fishing and angling. Fish movements will be tracked using mobile telemetry receivers from 2015-2017 and data will include observations of habitat utilization during over-wintering, spawning, and the post-spawning period.

 


Project Objectives:

1. Provide baseline fisheries and water quality data for Lake Eugenia to enable comparisons and monitor changes over time

2. Document the movement of Largemouth Bass within Lake Eugenia to identify, describe and evaluate habitat utilization and critical habitat

3. Conduct surveys to locate and map habitat areas used for over-wintering, spawning, and post-spawning

4. Incorporate an outreach and education component involving volunteers to assist with field-work, particularly students or young professionals in the field of environmental biology, as well as local residents

Figure 1. Grid map of Lake Eugenia showing the numbered quadrats (200 m x 200 m) for the radio telemetry tracking locations.

 

Table 1: Vital statistics of fish captured and implanted with radio transmitters in 2015 and 2016, Lake Eugenia

FISH CODE  TAG CODE   FLOY TAG SPECIES TL (mm) WEIGHT (LBS)
1 121 0000 LMB 371 1.9
2 2 0001 LMB 387 2
3 109 0002 LMB 400 2.4
4 18 0003 LMB 406 2.4
5 152 0004 LMB 384 2
6 62 0005 LMB 458 4.7
7 178 0006 LMB 364 1.7
8 138 0007 LMB 388 2
9 203 0008 LMB 431 2.9
10 34 0010 LMB 372 1.7
11 193 0017 LMB 380 1.9
12 80 0012 LMB 395 2.2
13 92 0015 LMB 427 2.3
14 46 0020 LMB 368 1.7
15 159 0011 LMB 502 5
16 1 0019 LMB 441 2.6
17 116 0014 LMB 444 2.6
18 82 0013 LMB 394 1.9
19 177 0016 LMB 448 2.7
20 133 0022 LMB 386 2.2
21 89 0023 LMB 422 2.5
22 52 0024 LMB 409 2.6
23* 22* 0025 LMB 375 1.9
23 22 0039 LMB 417 2.5
24 64 0026 SMB 377 1.8
25 154 0030 LMB 376 2
26 40 0028 LMB 391 1.9
27 210 0029 LMB 425 2.6
28 111 0031 LMB 442 3.3
29 93 0034 LMB 474 3.5
30 150 0041 LMB 390 2.0
- - 0021 LMB 406 3.3

 

* Original Code 22 Harvested

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