Broadcasting in our monthly PBS television program, The Catch is a Great Lakes Now series that brings you more news about the lakes you love. Go beyond the headlines with reporters from around the region who cover the lakes and drinking water issues. Find all the work HERE.
This month, The Catch features a look at how scientists are studying how well whitefish are surviving to adulthood in the Great Lakes.
Kurt Williams of Great Lakes Echo explains why lake whitefish, a native species in the Great Lakes, is experiencing what is known in the world of fisheries biology as a “recruitment problem.” This recruitment issue means that fewer young whitefish are making it to adulthood. Williams explains that the likely culprits are invasive species like zebra and quagga mussels.
When it comes to combating invasive mussels, Williams said from his view, there’s not much that can be done.
“I have seen stories about efforts to control them, but really I think that horse left the barn. There are hundreds and trillions,” he said. “They dominate the ecosystem.”
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Featured image: Invasive mussels in Good Harbor Bay, Lake Michigan. Photo by Great Lakes Outreach Media.