“To help combat the invasive, eel-like fish, Gov. Scott Walker signed legislation on Thursday for the state to spend up to $564,500 in the next two fiscal years on lamprey control efforts on Lake Michigan and Lake Superior.The controls include chemical treatments and barriers that block the movement of swimming lamprey, which according to the Wisconsin DNR ‘have no jaws, no true teeth, no paired fins and a skeleton made of cartilage, not true bone.’The state funds are expected to be matched with federal dollars for control efforts that are taking place across the Great Lakes basin.In Lake Michigan, 126 of 511 tributaries have historic records of sea lamprey production. Of those 83 tributaries have been treated with chemicals, according to the Fish and Wildlife Commission. A major focus of treatment took place on the Oconto River in northeastern Wisconsin, where about 60 miles of the river were treated.”
From the Great Lakes Echo:
“Sea lamprey – unlike the silver and American brook species – come from the Atlantic Ocean, accidentally introduced to the Great Lakes through shipping canals.
Like the native silver lamprey, sea lamprey are parasitic, with sharp teeth and a sucking disc mouth that allows them to feed on the blood of host fish. Also like the silver lamprey, they are harmless in their early stages of development.
Sea lamprey spend the first four years of their life as larvae in the soft bottom and banks of lakes or streams, according to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation.
As they mature, they change into the harmful predator threatening the Great Lakes today, said Yu-Weng Chung-Davidson, a senior research associate on Li’s team.”
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