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Sea lamprey control planned for Salt Creek in Porter County

Written by Chronicle Staff. Posted in Community News & People in the News

Published on May 02, 2018 with No Comments

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service will apply lampricides to the Salt Creek system in Porter County to attempt to eliminate invasive sea lamprey larvae burrowed in the stream bottom.

In accordance with state permits, treatments will take place between May 1 and 10, based on weather and stream conditions. They will be completed within three days.

According to DNR’s Lake Michigan fisheries biologist Brian Breidert, sea lamprey larvae live in certain Great Lakes tributaries and transform to parasitic adults that migrate to Lake Michigan and kill fish.

“Failure to eliminate the larvae in streams would result in significant mortality to many Great Lakes fish species,” Breidert said. “An adult sea lamprey can consume 40 pounds of fish during its parasitic stage in Lake Michigan.”

Infested tributaries must be treated every three to five years with lampricides to control sea lamprey populations. Lampricides are selectively toxic to sea lampreys, but a few fish, insects and broadleaf plants also may be sensitive.

Salt Creek was first treated in 2015 and has not been treated since.

The sea lamprey program is contracted through the Great Lakes Fishery Commission to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

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