Influence of Larval Gizzard Shad (Dorosoma cepedianum) Density on Piscivory and Growth of Young-of-Year Saugeye (Stizostedion vitreum x S. canadense)
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Citation:Stahl, Thomas P.; Stein, Roy A. "Influence of Larval Gizzard Shad (Dorosoma cepedianum) Density on Piscivory and Growth of Young-of-Year Saugeye (Stizostedion vitreum x S. canadense)," Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, v. 51, no. 9, 1994, pp. 1993-2002.
Growth and survival of young-of-year saugeye (Stizostedion vitreum x S. canadense) (stocked into Ohio reservoirs to create sport fisheries) are probably influenced by prey availability, variations in which may account for historically documented variability in stocking success. Because saugeye switch from a diet of zooplankton to fish once stocked, we sought to determine experimentally if saugeye size and available ichthyoplankton, i.e., larval gizzard shad (Borosoma cepediaraum), affected this switch and whether piscivory improved saugeye growth. In an enclosure experiment, saugeye (33.9 mm TL) immediately switched to piscivory when exposed to ichthyoplankton densities of 20 and l00m^-3, growing faster when more gizzard shad were available. In another enclosure experiment, saugeye 30-49 mm TL consumed 14-mm gizzard shad. In ponds (N = 4 ponds-treatment-1) containing zooplankton and chironornids, we compared saugeye growth with and without larval gizzard shad and found, as in the first enclosure experiment, that piscivory improved saugeye growth. Neither saugeye size nor ichthyoplankton density influenced how quickly saugeye switched to piscivory. We conclude that managers should stock saugeye >=30 mm 1-2 wk before peak ichthyoplankton densities to improve saugeye growth and survival by enhancing opportunities for exploitation of young-of-yeas gizzard shad.
Abstract in English and French.
This work was funded by the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Program (F-57-R, Evaluation of Fish Management Techniques), administered jointly by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Ohio Division of Wildlife.