Category: Aquatic Invasive Species

A three stage outreach transferability program of decision making tool to prevent, manage, and control Asian carp populations in Lake Michigan tributaries based on the evaluation of transport of eggs of local Asian carp populations

  • Develop an outreach plan for technology transfer targeting three stakeholder groups: technical and scientific community, decision makers, and K-12 students and general public
  • Train and instruct the technical and scientific community on how to use and
    interpret FluEgg as a decision making tool, but also to educate decision makers and the general public on the importance of preventing, controlling and managing Asian carp at early life stages

Aquatic nuisance species – evaluating the ecological and economic value of the 100th Meridian Initiative

  • In what parts of the Columbia and Colorado river and reservoir systems are zebra mussels likely to thrive if they are introduced from infested eastern waters?
  • For those parts of the target river systems that meet the ecological requirements of zebra mussel, what a) environmental goods and services, and b) financial and commercial goods and services are at risk?
  • What are the costs and how effective are different prevention strategies? For the 100th Meridian Initiative, what is the most cost-effective level of investment in prevention and control?

Aquatic nuisance species: an evaluation of barriers for preventing the spread of Bighead and Silver carp to the Great Lakes

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of electric barriers in restricting the movement of bighead and/or silver carp
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of acoustic/bubble barriers in restricting the movement of bighead and/or silver carp
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of combined barrier types (i.e. electric / acoustic / bubble) in restricting the movements of bighead and/or silver carp

Assessing the ecological impacts of Eastern Banded Killifish: a native transplant species rapidly expanding its range in Illinois and Indiana

In North America, there are two subspecies of Banded Killifish (Fundulus diaphanus): the Eastern Banded Killifish (F. d. diaphanus) and the Western Banded Killifish (F. d. menona). While Banded Killifish are considered secure across their range, some populations of Western Banded Killifish are considered Vulnerable or Threatened and populations of Eastern Banded Killifish are expanding rapidly into new regions. Subtle differences in the ecology between subspecies has been found to have strong effects on community composition and energy pathways in freshwater ecosystems. Potential ecological differences between Eastern and Western Banded Killifish are unstudied, therefore through this graduate student scholars project we seek to investigate the trophic ecology of Banded Killifish populations from Illinois and Indiana. Using stable isotope analysis, we can determine whether there is an ecological difference in trophic position and dietary niche width between the two subspecies, as well as how the invasion of the Eastern subspecies could impact the Western subspecies and freshwater communities or ecosystems more generally.

Behavior based classification of aquatic invasive fish species in underwater video

Aquatic invasive species pose a serious threat to aquatic ecosystems. In the Great Lakes, new fish species that are non-native to the environment have been introduced due to transoceanic activities. These species compete with native species causing a heavy toll on the environment and economy by shifting ecological balances and disrupting food chains. While many methods exist to sample fish, due to the increasing availability of underwater video, fish can now be sampled by crowd sourcing or using Image recognition techniques. These methods have highlighted the challenges associated with identifying fish based on their appearance against a cluttered background. This graduate student scholars project aims to identify and model fish behavior in underwater video using machine learning methods that are suited for classification of classification of time series data. Video data of round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) from literature will be used to test the approach. The methods proposed here will significantly increase the usability of existing datasets and enable the creation of life-like animations for use in virtual training environments. 

Bighead carp in the upper midwest river: competition with native filter-feeding fishes and potential threats to the Great Lakes

  • To determine the extent of dietary overlap between bighead carp and native filter-feeding fishes in the Mississippi and Illinois river systems
  • To use data from the Long Term Resource Monitoring Program to examine whether specific environmental factors correlate with successful reproduction of bighead carp in the Upper Mississippi River System
  • To test the effectiveness of an electric barrier in restricting the spread of bighead carp

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