Early life history and recruitment of lake trout
Investigators: Ellen Marsden

Lake trout were extirpated in the Great Lakes in the 1960s-70s by overfishing and sea lamprey predation, and disappeared from Lake Champlain by 1900. Efforts to restore this species throughout the lakes have met with limited success. We have determined that stocked lake trout use multiple spawning sites in Lake Champlain, and produce higher densities of eggs and fry than at sites in Parry Sound, Lake Huron, where restoration has been successful. Continuing research seeks to understand the bottlenecks between fry emergence and recruitment to the yearling stage, including predation and competition with other native species.

Relevant Publications:

  • Marsden, J. E., B. J. Ellrott, J. Jonas, R. Claramunt, and J. Fitzsimons. 2005. A comparison of lake trout spawning, emergence, and habitat use in lakes Michigan, Huron, and Champlain. J. Great Lakes Res. 31:492-508
  • Claramunt, R. M., J. L. Jonas, J. D. Fitzsimons, and J. E. Marsden. 2005. Influences of spawning habitat characteristics and interstitial predators on lake trout egg deposition and mortality. Trans. Am. Fish. Soc. 134:1048-1057.
  • Ellrott, B. E. and J. E. Marsden. 2004. Lake trout restoration in Lake Champlain. Trans. Am. Fish. Soc. 133:252-264
  • Jonas, J. L., R. M. Claramunt, J. F. Fitzsimons, J. E. Marsden and B. J. Ellrott 2005. Estimates of egg deposition and effects of lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush) egg predators in three regions of the Great Lakes. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 62:2254-2264.