OMNR – Characteristics of Ontario Muskellunge Fisheries Based on Volunteer Angler Diary Information_2004

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Kerr, S. J. 2004. Characteristics of Ontario muskellunge fisheries based on volunteer angler diary information. Fish and Wildlife Branch. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Peterborough, Ontario. 19 p. + appendices.

Click here to view summaries from all archived OMNR publications.

Abstract
This report consolidates volunteer angler diary information, collected from a variety of sources over a period of more than forty years, to provide an overview of muskellunge sport fisheries in Ontario. Based on reported angling effort it is obvious that muskellunge are becoming an increasingly popular species. Muskellunge catches were found to be strongly correlated with reported angling effort. Angling success, in terms of catch-per-unit-effort, has improved over the past twenty-five years and Ontario waters now provide some of the highest quality muskellunge fisheries in North America. Muskellunge in excess of 50 inches are captured from several waters each year. It is expected that the next world record muskellunge will be angled from somewhere in Ontario. Voluntary release rates of muskellunge among muskellunge anglers have also increased over the past two decades to the point where approximately 98% of all angled muskellunge are now released after capture. Overall, Ontario’s muskellunge fisheries appear to be stable and sustainable. This can be attributed to an increase in the catch-and-release ethic as well as new minimum size limit regulations. Volunteer angler diary programs should continue to be used to monitor the status of Ontario’s muskellunge fisheries in the future.

Read/download the full report by clicking the link below (PDF – 1.46 MB)

OMNR – Characteristics of Ontario Muskellunge Fisheries Based on Volunteer Angler Diary Information_2004

Effective Release Techniques for Muskellunge – 1999

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Click here to view summaries from all archived OMNR publications.

1999. Effective Release Techniques for Muskellunge – 1999. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Peterborough, Ontario.

The muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) or muskie as it is commonly known, is a fast growing predator and highly prized torophy fish.  The muskie is closely related to the northern pike (Esox lucius) which leads some inexperienced anglers to mistake the two since their shapes are nearly identical.

Colouration is probably the easiest way to separate the species.  The colour of the muskie is variable, ranging from silver-green to dark brown, but is consistent with dark markings on a light background.  In contrast, the northern pike has light markings on a dark background.  Muskies have a pointed tail and angular fins: the pike’s tail and fins are rounded.  Musies have more scales on their cheeks and more sub-mandibular pors than pike.

Read/download the full report by clicking the link below (PDF – 850 KB)
OMNR_Effective Release Techniques for Muskellunge_1999

Brewer Park Project Wins Prestigious National Conservation Award

OTTAWA, ON, Thursday, February 18, 2016Brewer Park Pond Restoration Project has received the Top Canadian Fishing Industry Conservation Project Award for 2015. This award, presented at the Spring Fishing and Boat Show at the International Centre in Mississauga, ON is determined by a vote of the members of the Canadian Angling Hall of Fame.

Award
2015 Conservation Award

For Muskies Canada (Ottawa Chapter) and the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA), this is the second year in a row where one of their partnership projects has received recognition. In 2014, the partners were recognized for work to create nursery and feeding habitat for fish along the Jock River in Richmond.

“The Brewer Park Pond Project was a particularly exciting project,” says Jennifer Lamoureux, RVCA Aquatic Fish Habitat Biologist. “Rarely is there a chance to have such significant impact on habitat in the heart of the city.”

Work began in fall 2014 to return the landlocked Brewer Park Pond, a former artificial swimming hole from the 1960s, back into a naturally functioning habitat connected to the Rideau River. Project partners looked to increase overall biodiversity of the pond with shoreline plantings, breeding bird habitat, amphibian habitat, and prime areas for spawning, nursery, rearing and feeding habitat for local fish species found in the Rideau all year round.

“It’s pretty special for a city to have northern pike and muskellunge in their downtown waterways,” said Peter Levick, President of Muskies Canada. “We worked for many years to support a project of this importance in an urban setting and we are delighted with the partnership that made it possible.”

The project brings biodiversity to the heart of the city with new and improved natural habitat for all sorts of aquatic species and improved habitat for shoreline animals.

“Extensive work was done to remove soil and contour the pond to make it a more useful and diverse fish habitat,” commented Mrs. Lamoureux who oversaw the project. “But a great deal of planning went in to optimizing the changes so that many different species — including birds, turtles and frogs, would benefit from the restoration.”

“This work is only made possible thanks to the many partners,” acknowledged Mr. Levick — a sentiment quickly reiterated by Mrs. Lamoureux. “Without the involvement of many, we couldn’t get this sort of work done. We’ve had great interest and support and needless to say, we’ll be looking for another project in the future.”

This award was accepted on behalf of Richcraft, Minto, the City of Ottawa, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Muskies Canada, the Institute of Environmental Science at Carleton University, and the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority. Special thanks goes out to the Ottawa South Community Association and the many community volunteers who assisted with tree and shrub planting.

Project Highlights:
16,000 square metres of new, functioning wetland and fish habitat in the heart of the City of Ottawa
1,000 truckloads of soil removed to contour pond into more productive habitat
1,600 trees, shrubs and aquatic plants planted in and around the pond by 120 community volunteers
8 weeks of construction from October to December 2014
basking logs, root wads and log piles installed as habitat for turtles, fish, amphibians

Photo available upon request. Contact diane.downey@rvca.ca

For more information contact:

Jennifer Lamoureux
Aquatic and Fish Habitat Biologist, RVCA
613-692-3571 Ext 1108
jennifer.lamoureux@rvca.ca

Fishing Jerk baits

I love going back through old Muskie magazines and articles looking for « new » ideas.  This isn’t rocket science.  The tools we use now are radically different and better than they were 20 years ago, but we’re still trying to fool an animal with a brain the size of a pea and get it to attack our bait.

I found this article in the Muskies Canada Release Journal  – April 1986.  I’ve always struggled with jerk baits and as a result, I don’t fish them that often.  The article is 30 years old, but I’m hoping it pays dividends next season …..

JERKS OR JERKBAITS

By John Parry – From Muskies Canada Release Journal April 1986

What kind of a person hurls a piece of wood on a line into the water, reels it in and does it again and again – all day long?

Well, if you’re not a muskie angler I think I would call you a jerk, however if you are a muskie angler you’re definitely a jerkbaiter.

Using a jerkbait is hard work if you do it all day but there are some ways to make it easier.

Rule number one is pace, think of how long you plan to be on the water then work the biat with the appropriate  vigor.

Rule number two is to not overwork your baits but to develop a consistent pattern with moderate pulls.

The moderation of the extent of the pulls will allow your bait to work well, help you keep control over the bait, make it easier to maintain your balance and will keep you from feeling like your arms and back had been run over by a freight train by the end of the day.

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I mentioned the word consistent when I spoke on how to work the bait, this can mean different things but in this case it was directed at the setting of a specific pattern and following it.  If you do a pull, pull, pull, twitch, twitch, pull, pull, pull pattern follow it and build a rhythm with it and after a while you will find it quite easy.

I have also found gliders are the easiest type to work because they have virtually no water resistance and like their name glide through the water.

 

 

 

In contrast, the diving baits such as the Suick and Bobby baits have to be pumped down with very rapid pulls and quick reeling.

The vertical movement of these lures causes quite a bit more resistance in the water and can tire you quicker than the gliders.

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The two lures have their own place in your arsenal and if used properly they can be very productive.  The diving baits are best utilized in areas where you want to get down to the fish such as at drop offs or over deep weeds.  In contrast, the gliders perform much better over shallow rocks and weed beds where their tantalizing side to side action can be effective without hanging up.

The understanding of why these lures work is extremely important to the way they are worked.

These lures are representing the muskies favorite snack, that is a wounded bait fish and must somewhere along the line give a reasonable imitation of them.

Injured bait fish do very strange things because in most cases they can predict their own future, such as someone’s dinner, therefore they give their last ounce of strength to get out of dangers way.

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I have personally witnessed many injured perch, bass and sunfish on their sides attempting to dive to the safety of the weed bed below and after a very short period of time they mystically disappear.  These fish have all but lost control of their bodies, as they seem to gain buoyancy and lose their equilibrium.

This is what your jerkbait is attempting to duplicate, and that is why I have found an erratic retrieve in most cases will interest more fish.

The next problem we fact after getting them interested enough to take a good shot at trying to inhale your offering is how to keep her on.

This year I have been a good example of what not to do, because I ended the season 0 for 5.  All of these fish I had on and had hooks into, so call it what you want but let’s be kind and say I’m a very good sportsman involved in long distance release.

The truth of the matter is that the problem I experienced last year is a common one for Jerkbait anglers, because the weight of the lure combined with the problems of getting really good hook sets leaves the greatest odds of the fish escaping.

There are ways of getting around these odds, the first being the use of extra sharp hooks, these will make it much easier to penetrate the extremely hard bony mouth of the lunge with a good hook set.  The second is with tackle, a relatively stiff muskie rod combined with heavy dacron fishing line gives you that no-stretch and power combination required to drive home those sharp hooks.  I also use a good quality heavy bait casting reel, and this is a must, because a light reel will virtually fall apart internally when attempting to handle these big baits.

The grip of the rod is very important if you want to obtain the maximum leverage during the hook set.  A very good friend of mine, and might I say one of the best muskie men I know, converted me from the standard grip of cupping the reel to holding onto the top grip of the rod.

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The new method of holding on to the rod felt very strange to me, but after a while it was quite natural and I really can feel the added pressure I am able to exert through the rod.

The playing of the fish is really no different than if you were fighting any muskie, only you must realize that if the fish jumps the odds seem to be much greater on you losing the fish, (I know that’s how I lost most of mine this year).

The next topic that I feel that I should mention is when and where to use these baits.  These lures can produce fish all year, but I have a particular preference for using them in the fall season.  This time of year is when the truly large fish become relatively easy to locate and are really hungry.

The way I discover these locations is first by marking on my hydrographic map the fastest breaking shorelines and then picking out the best areas to concentrate my efforts.

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The inside turn on this shoreline is a prime fall muskie spot, as it is close to deep water and is not far from a large week flat area which draws these fish during the summer season.

 

 

 

The very fast drop off helps these large fish fee effectively at a time of year when weather conditions change very quickly.

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In the summer with the more stable weather conditions, the muskie can travel further because once she gets to the feeding area the chances are that the conditions will not change radically and therefore she will not be in constant motion without feeding.  With this increase in the distance she is willing to travel, so increases the locations where you might find her and makes it a more time consuming process.

In the fall I have found that either the fish is in a location or she isn’t and within a few casts you will find this out and you can eliminate a lot of water very quickly.

These are but a few suggestions to make it easier to use these lures productively, but the main point is you must use the bait.  To gain confidence in it you will need to work it properly and you must feel comfortable with it on your line.  After you see the first lunge take a shot at it I’m sure you’ll be like me, hooked on Jerkbaits !

 

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2016 Hugh C. Becker Muskie Symposium

50 Years of Co-operation

March 13-15, Minneapolis, MN

Registration is now open. 

Download the schedule of speakers (.xlsx File – 17 KB). 

Abstracts for all talks and poster sessions

Keynote Speakers


Trophy Muskellunge Populations and Fisheries Can Be Sustainable

John M. Casselman*, Queen’s University, Department of Biology – Kingston ON

Jonah L. Withers, Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

Thomas J. Howson, Trent University, Peterborough, ON


The Muskies Inc. Lunge Log Database . . . 370,000 Muskies and Growing

Kevin Richards*, Muskies Inc., Henley, MO

Juris Ozols, Muskies, Inc., Apple Valley, MN

Randy Lowewecke, Muskies, Inc., Rockford, IL

Jim Bunch, Muskies, Inc., Rochester, MN


 Anglers, Science, and Management


Going Wild: Canada’s Path to Sustainable Muskellunge Populations

Peter Levick, President, Muskies Canada Inc., Papineauville, QC


 Ontario’s Muskellunge Angler Log Program – 1979-2015

Dan Taillon*, Fisheries Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Peterborough, ON

Davin Heinbuck*, National Research Director, Muskies Canada Inc., St. Mary’s, ON


 Characteristics of the Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) Fishery Based on Angler Diaries in the St. Lawrence River, Quebec (Canada).

Philippe Brodeur*, Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs, direction de la gestion de la faune Mauricie–Centre-du-Québec, Trois-Rivières, QC

Rémi Bacon, Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs, direction de la gestion de la faune Mauricie–Centre-du-Québec, Trois-Rivières, QC

Daniel Hatin, Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs, direction de la gestion de la faune Estrie-Montréal-Montérégie-Laval, Longueuil, QC


Volunteer Guides as a Novel Source of Data Collection for Riverine Muskellunge Populations in Northwest Wisconsin

Max Wolter, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Hayward, Wisconsin


 Muskellunge Stock Assessment in Two North-Central Minnesota Lakes Aided by Angler Participation.

Matthew C. Ward*, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Walker Area Fisheries, Walker, MN,

Loren M. Miller, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Research, and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

Doug W. Schultz, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Walker Area Fisheries, Walker, MN

Carl A. Pedersen, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Walker Area Fisheries, Walker, MN


The Saint John River Muskellunge Tagging Project, 2006-2015.

Steven J. Kerr*, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (retired), Ennismore, ON.

Brandon Jones, Saint John River Chapter, Muskies Canada Inc., Upper Kingsclear, NB


Maintaining Momentum in Ohio’s Stocked Muskellunge Fisheries through an Angler Agency Partnership

Scott Hale*, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Columbus, OH

Kevin Page, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Hebron, OH

Curtis Wagner, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Akron, OH


A Management Tool for Biologists and an Online Fishing Resource for Anglers: An Introduction to the Ohio Muskie Angler Log

Curtis Wagner*, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Akron, OH

Kevin Page, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Hebron, OH

Edward Lewis, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Findlay, OH

  1. Scott Hale, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Columbus, OH

Integrating Voluntary Angler Catch Reports with Mark-Recapture Data to Model a Muskellunge Fishery in Clear Fork Reservoir, Ohio

Kevin Page, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Hebron, OH

Edward Lewis, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Findlay, OH


Assessment of a Riverine Muskellunge Population in Minnesota

Owen Baird*, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Brainerd, MN

Andrew J. Carlson, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Brainerd, MN

Loren M. Miller, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Research, and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN


Muskellunge Habitat


Spawning Habitat for Muskellunge Is Far More Variable Than We Ever Expected – Even 2 Years Ago.

Jim Diana1*, Kyle Battige1, Paul Cunningham3, Patrick Hanchin2, Cleyo Harris2, Terry Margenau3, John Molenhouse1, Joe Nohner1, Nick Popoff2, Dave Rowe3, Ashley Rust1, Mike Thomas2, and Sarah Zorn1.

1School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 2Michigan Department of Natural Resources

3Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources


Fine-Scale Features of Muskellunge Spawning Grounds in Georgian Bay

Dan Weller*, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

Patricia Chow-Fraser, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON


 Index of Nursery Habitat Suitability for Muskellunge in Georgian Bay, Lake Huron

John Paul Leblanc*, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

Patricia Chow-Fraser, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON


 Effects of Water Level and Substrate Slope on Availability of Suitable Habitat for Young-of-the-Year Muskellunge in Georgian Bay

Patricia Chow-Fraser*, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

Dan Weller, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON


 Habitat Use by age-0 Muskellunge in the Upper Niagara River, New York

Derek P. Crane*, Department of Biology, Coastal Carolina University, Conway, SC

Kevin L. Kapuscinski, School of Biological Sciences, Lake Superior State University, Sault Ste. Marie, MI


 Spring Flow Variability Associated With Muskellunge Recruitment on the Upper James River, VA

Daniel B. Goetz*, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Farmville, VA

Scott M. Smith, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Forest, VA


 Evaluating Spawning Habitat and Natural Recruitment of Great Lakes Spotted Muskellunge in Green Bay, Lake Michigan

Kyle Battige, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Fort Collins, CO

Jim Diana, University of Michigan School of Natural Resources, Ann Arbor, MI

David Rowe*, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fitchburg, WI


Muskellunge Population Dynamics 


St. Lawrence River Muskellunge and Effects of Invasive Species and VHSV: Population Indicators and Potential Effects of Emerging Viral Variants

John M. Farrell*, State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

Rodman G. Getchell, Cornell University – College of Veterinary Medicine, Ithaca, NY

Emily R. Cornwell, Cornell University – College of Veterinary Medicine, Ithaca, NY


Die-Off of Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) in the Upper St. Lawrence River Caused by Viral Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, 2005–2008: Impacts and Consequences

John.M. Casselman*, Queen’s University, Department of Biology, Kingston, ON

Tom Lusk, Parks Canada, St. Lawrence Islands National Park, Mallorytown, ON

John.M. Farrell, State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

Colin Lake, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Lake Ontario Management Unit, Glenora Fisheries Station, Picton, ON


A Modeling Evaluation of Multiple Threats to Lake St. Clair Muskellunge

Jason Smith*, Little Travers Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Harbor Springs, MI

Daniel Hayes, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Mary Tate Bremigan, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Michael Thomas, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Lake St. Clair Fisheries Research Station, Harrison Twp., MI


Effect of Stocking and Biotic and Abiotic Factors on Muskellunge Recruitment in Northern Wisconsin Lakes

Todd S. Caspers1, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

Michael J. Hansen2*, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

Steven W. Hewett, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Fisheries Management, Madison, WI 

1Present address: North Dakota Game and Fish Department, Devils Lake, ND

2Present address: U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center, Hammond Bay Biological Station, Millersburg, MI


Electrofishing Catchability of Juvenile Muskellunge in Northern Wisconsin Lakes

Janice Kerns1,2*, Daniel Isermann1,3, and Timothy Simonson4

1Fisheries Analysis Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

2Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

3U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

4Bureau of Fisheries Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI


Muskellunge Population Responses to Angler Catch and Release Practices in Escanaba Lake, WI, 1987 – 2015.

Lawrence D. Eslinger*, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Fisheries Management, Woodruff, WI

Greg G. Sass, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Science Services, Escanaba Lake Research Station, Boulder Junction, WI

Steven P. Newman (retired), Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Science Services, Escanaba Lake Research Station, Boulder Junction, WI


Effects of Consumption-Oriented Versus Trophy-Oriented Fisheries on Muskellunge Population Size Structure in Northern Wisconsin

Matthew Faust1*, Fisheries Analysis Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

Michael Hansen2, Fisheries Analysis Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

1Present address: Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Sandusky, OH

2Present address: U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center, Hammond Bay Biological Station, Millersburg, MI


Haters Gonna Hate (Esox edition): User-group Conflicts and Vigilante Justice in the Age of Social Media

Brian R. Murphy*, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Sasha S. Doss, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA


Can They Play Nicely? Creating and Managing A Two-Predator System

Sasha Doss*, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Joe Williams, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Blacksburg, VA

Brian R. Murphy, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Vic DiCenzo, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Leandro Castello, Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA


Muskellunge Biology, Ecology, and Life History


Feeding Habitats and Diet of the Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy): A Review

Steven J. Kerr, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (retired), Ennismore, Ontario


Tiger Muskellunge Diet and Effect on Target Prey Species in Curlew Lake, Washington

Marcus J. Divens*, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Spokane, WA

William P. Baker, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Colville, WA

Bruce D. Bolding, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympia, WA


Seasonal Movements of Muskellunge in North Bend Lake, West Virginia.

Scott F. Morrison*, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Parkersburg, WV

Lila H. Warren, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Beckley, WV


West Virginia Muskellunge: Findings from Recent Telemetry Studies

Lila H. Warren, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Beckley WV


Movement of Muskellunge in the St. Croix River System

Joel Stiras,East Metro Area Fisheries Office, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, St. Paul, MN


A Field Portable Non-Lethal Muskellunge Tissue Sampling Device for the Analysis of Harmful Environmental Contaminants

Justen Poole*, Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Vincent Bessonneau, Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Jonathan Grandy, Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Janusz Pawliszyn, Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada


Genetics


A review of Muskellunge population genetics: implications for management and research directions

Loren M. Miller.1*, John M. Farrell2, Kevin L. Kapuscinski3, Kim Scribner4, Brian S. Sloss5, Keith Turnquist6, Chris C. Wilson7

1 Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

2State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

3School of Biological Sciences, CRW225, Lake Superior State University, Sault Ste. Marie, MI

4Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
5College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

6Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

7Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Trent University Peterborough, ON


 Genetic Insights into Wild Muskellunge Populations in Ontario

Chris Wilson, Aquatic Research Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Trent University, Peterborough, ON


Population Genomics of Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) in the St. Lawrence River and the Inland Waters of Québec (Canada): Impact of 47 years of Stocking and Management Implications of a Trophy Fishery

Anne Carrier*, Département de Biologie, Institut de Biologie Intégrative et des Systèmes, Université Laval, Quebec, QC

Anne-Laure Ferchaud, Département de Biologie, Institut de Biologie Intégrative et des Systèmes, Université Laval, Quebec, QC

Philippe Brodeur, 2Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs, direction générale du secteur central, direction de la gestion de la faune Mauricie–Centre-du-Québec, 100 rue Laviolette, bureau 207, Trois-Rivières, G9A 5S9, Canada

John M.Farrell, State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

Louis Bernatchez, Département de Biologie, Institut de Biologie Intégrative et des Systèmes, Université Laval, Quebec, QC


Muskellunge Genetic Integrity and Structure in the Great Lakes: Implications for Propagation Programs

Keith Turnquist1*, John M. Farrell2, Kevin L. Kapuscinski 3, Loren M. Miller4, Kim Scribner5, Brian S. Sloss6, Chris C. Wilson7

1Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

2State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

3School of Biological Sciences, CRW225, Lake Superior State University, Sault Ste. Marie, MI

4Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

5Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

6College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

7Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Trent University Peterborough, ON


Curtis P. Wagner1*, Illinois Natural History Survey, Kaskaskia Biological Station, Sullivan, IL

Max H. Wolter2, Illinois Natural History Survey, Kaskaskia Biological Station, Sullivan, IL

Corey S. DeBoom, Illinois Natural History Survey, Kaskaskia Biological Station, Sullivan, IL

Matthew J. Diana, Illinois Natural History Survey, Kaskaskia Biological Station, Sullivan, IL

Michael J. Weber, Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management, Iowa State University, Ames, IA

David H. Wahl, Illinois Natural History Survey, Kaskaskia Biological Station, Sullivan, IL

1 Present address: Ohio Division of Wildlife, Akron, OH

2 Present address: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Hayward, WI


Water wolves and tigers: testing for directional hybridization and introgression between Northern Pike (Esox lucius) and Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy)

Cait Nemeczek*, Department of Biology, Trent University, Peterborough, ON

Joanna Freeland, Department of Biology, Trent University, Peterborough, ON

Chris Wilson, Aquatic Research Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Trent University, Peterborough, ON


Muskellunge Assessment Techniques


Using Long-term Mark-Recapture Data to Assess Muskellunge Population Characteristics: Application to Two Illinois Reservoirs
Neil P. Rude1*, David C. Glover2,William D. Hintz3, Shawn Hirst4, Rob Hilsabeck4, Wayne Herndon4, and Gregory W. Whitledge1

Presenting author email: nrude@siu.edu

1Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL

2Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

3Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY

4Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Murphysboro, IL


 A Comparison of Muskellunge Weight Estimation Equations to a Modified Length-Girth Technique

Jonathan R. Meerbeek, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Spirit Lake, IA


The Birth of a Muskie Lake: A Strategy for Assessing Survival, Age and Growth

Jordan G. Weeks, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Management, La Crosse, WI


Understanding Muskellunge Growth Using PIT-tag Recapture data in Lakes in Northwestern Wisconsin

Timothy Parks*, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Science Services, Spooner, WI

Jeff Kampa, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Management, Spooner, WI

Gene Hatzenbeler, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Management, Spooner, WI

Martin Jennings, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, St. Paul, MN


Assessment of Leech Lake Strain Musky Stocking in Lake Wissota, WI

Joseph Gerbyshak, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Management, Eau Claire, WI


A General Assessment of a Southern Riverine Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) Population

Jason M. Hallacher*, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Region 4 Aquatics, Verona, VA

Brad Fink, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Region 4 Aquatics, Verona, VA

Steve J. Reeser, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Region 4 Aquatics, Verona, VA


Population Estimate of Adult Muskellunge in Lake Bemidji

Anthony J. Kennedy, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Bemidji Area Fisheries Office, Bemidji, Minnesota, MN

Andrew L. Thompson,, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Bemidji Area Fisheries Office, Bemidji, Minnesota, MN

Andrew P. Wiering*, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Bemidji Area Fisheries Office, Bemidji, Minnesota, MN

Gary C. Barnard, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Bemidji Area Fisheries Office, Bemidji, Minnesota, MN


Regional Management Approaches


130 Years of Muskellunge Management on Chautauqua Lake

Christopher Legard, New York Department of Environmental Conservation, Buffalo, NY


Ontario’s Approach to the Management of Muskellunge

Dan Taillon, Fisheries Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Peterborough, ON


Managing and Monitoring Muskellunge Populations in Eastern Georgian Bay and the North Channel of Lake Huron- A Twenty Year Retrospective

Arunas Liskauskas, Upper Great Lakes Management Unit, Lake Huron Office, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Owen Sound, ON


Managing Muskellunge in MN: Deliberate Steps to Better Fishing in the Next Two Decades

Mike Habrat*, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Detroit Lakes, MN

T.J. DeBates, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, St. Paul, MN

Steve Mero, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Grand Ripids, MN

Jim Wolters, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Fergus Falls, MN


Trends in Muskellunge Fishing Tournaments in a North Central Wisconsin County

Dave Seibel, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Management, Antigo, WI


Managing Muskie on the Fringe: An Examination of Nebraska’s Efforts to Provide Quality Fishing Outside the Native Range

Keith Koupal, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, Kearney, NE


Muskellunge in Eastern South Dakota

Brian G. Blackwell*, South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, Webster, SD

David O. Lucchesi, South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, Sioux Falls, SD

Matthew J. Ward, South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, Blue Dog State Fish Hatchery, Waubay, SD


Muskellunge Propagation and Stocking


Realized Effects of Implementing a Genetic Broodstock Management Plan for Muskellunge in Wisconsin.

Justin A. VanDeHey*, Fisheries Propagation Science Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

Zeb Woiak, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Resource Center, Whitney Genetics Laboratory, 555 Lester Avenue Onalaska, WI 54650

Brian L. Sloss, Fisheries Propagation Science Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI


Paternity Analysis of Pooled-Milt Spawning Practices for Muskellunge Broodstocks

Loren M. Miller, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Research, and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN


Growth, Condition, and Short-term Survival of Age-0 Muskellunge Reared Using Two Different Techniques

Michael F. Vaske1*, Justin A. VanDeHey1, Dan J. Dembkowski1, Brian L. Sloss2, Tim D. Simonson3, Richard A. Klett4

1Fishery Propagation Science Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

2U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

3Bureau of Fisheries Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI

4Wild Rose State Fish Hatchery, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Wild Rose, WI


 An Overview of the Lake Simcoe Muskellunge Restoration Project

Gabrielle Liddle, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Aurora District, Aurora, ON


Poster Session


Influence of Habitat Additions on Survival, Growth, and Condition of Extensively-Reared Muskellunge

Daniel J. Dembkowski*, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, Fish Propagation Science Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

Steven Fajfer, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Wild Rose State Fish Hatchery, Wild Rose, WI

David Ewald, Fishiding Reclaimed Artificial Fish Habitat, Wonder Lake, IL

David Rowe*, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fitchburg, WI

Mike Rennicke, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fitchburg, WI

Scot Stewart, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Fitchburg, WI (retired)


Predicting Abundance of Adult Muskellunge in Northern Wisconsin Lakes

Janice Kerns1,2*, Daniel Isermann1,3, Timothy Simonson4, Joseph Hennessy4, and Thomas Cichosz4

1Fisheries Analysis Center, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

2Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

3U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

4Bureau of Fisheries Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI


Long-Term Changes in Wisconsin’s Muskellunge Fishery

Timothy D. Simonson, Bureau of Fisheries Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI


Effects of a 40-inch Minimum Length Limit on Muskellunge in Wisconsin Lakes

Timothy D. Simonson, Bureau of Fisheries Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI


Development of a cooperative relationship with the Wisconsin Department of Resources (WDNR) for the purpose of side by side research of differential species of Muskellunge Stocking.

Winston John Hopkins, Capital City Muskies Inc., Madison, WI


Brood Source Identification and the Effects of Supplementation on Muskellunge in the Great Lakes

Patrick Hanchin1*, Brian L. Sloss2, Keith Turnquist3, Kevin Kapuscinski4, John Farrell5, Loren Miller6, Kim Scribner7, and Chris Wilson8

1Charlevoix Fisheries Station, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Charlevoix, MI

2College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

3Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI

4School of Biologial Sciences, CRW225, Lake Superior State University, Sault Ste. Marie, MI

5State University of New York – College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY

6Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Department of Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

7Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

8Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Trent University Peterborough, ON

The Saint John River Muskellunge Tagging Project, 2006 – 2015

January 2016 – Steven Kerr and Brandon Jones

A Saint. John River Muskellunge
A Saint. John River Muskellunge (Muskies Canada photo)

Executive Summary

This document has been prepared to summarize results of a muskellunge tagging project which has been conducted on the Saint John River, New Brunswick, from 2006 to 2015 (inclusive).  During that period of time, 691 muskellunge have been angled, tagged and released by members of the Sait John River chapter of Muskies Cnada Inc.  a total of 64 (9.3%) tagged muskellunge were recaptured by angling.  an additional four tagged fish were captured at the Mactaquac Dam fishway.

Most muskellunge were observed to establish discrete summer home ranges from which there was little, if any, movement.  Transitional movements are believed to occur during the spring and fall associated with spawning and the establishment of summer and winter ranges.  Muskellunge movements which were documented in this study occurred in both upstream and downstream directions in almost equal proportion.  Muskellunge also demonstrated the ability to move long distances both upstream and downstream including passage over/through the Mactaquac dam.

Results regarding muskellunge behavior and movements from this study, to date, are generally consistent with observations (small home ranges, males more sedentary than females, movements seasonal in nature, capable of long distance movements, etc.) reported from similar tagging studies in other North American jurisdictions.

It is proposed that future efforts be directed to obtaining more information on recaptured fish.  With additional recapture information, a more detailed analysis of muskellunge in the Saint John watershed can be completed.

Read the full report by clicking the link below (pdf)

St. John River Tagging Project , 2006-2015 (Final)

 

Muskie Fishing Tips

By Ross Nichols

New to the sport or a seasoned veteran, these tips should help improve your game.

1. LEADERS – Use a 3-5 foot leader for trolling depending on water clarity. 130-150 pound test. A 12 inch in wire or fluorocarbon for casting.

2. NET- One with a sizable basket for the muskie in your fishing area. Put some glow tape around the net and place a flashlight on the yoke.  When netting in the dark the net and fish will show up. If you are alone, once the fish is in the net, place net in Down East rod holder  and attach lanyard

3. RELEASE TOOLS – Have long handle, long nose pliers, vise grips for removing hooks in a fish or for “T » your hooks and a Knipex bolt cutter easily accessible for cutting hooks.  You will also need a hook out tool.   Tools can be expensive – tie a lanyard with clip to each tool and attach it to you net in order to prevent loss.

4. CAMERA- Have your camera ready for that photo of a lifetime, ensure that battery is charged and be sure to protect it during the cold weather from freezing. Take a release shot in the water.

5. When trolling at last light or night trolling, put a little glow tape around tip of your rod, when the light from your headlight or spot light shines on the tip you will be able see your rod action.

Feeding Habits and Diet of the Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy): a Review of Potential Impacts on Resident Biota

January 2016 – Report prepared by Steven J. Kerr for Muskies Canada Inc. and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

Executive Summary

The Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) is known as a voracious apex predator.  In instances where muskellunge are extending their range, either through intentional or inadvertent introduction and natural range extension, concerns have been identified about the potential negative impacts on resident fishes and aquatic biota.  This review has been conducted to assemble information on muskellunge predatory habits and diet as well as interspecific competition with other species.

Muskellunge prey on a wide variety of organisms but prefer other fishes.  Predation is based largely on whatever species in available at the preferred size.  There is a considerable amount of evidence to indicate that Muskellunge prefer soft-rayed fishes and the availability of soft-rayed prey cound determine the degree of predation on other species.

Generally, there a few definitive studies to quantify impacts (if any) of Muskellunge on other fish species.  There is very little evidence to indicate that Muskellunge have a significant negative impact on populations of other popular sport fish species including Walleye, Largemouth Bass and Smallmouth Bass.  In fact, there are numerous instances where these fish species successfully co-habit the same waterbody.  Since Muskellunge seldom occupy coldwater habitats, their interactions with coldwater fishes (i.e. salmonids and coregonids) are poorly understood.  This is an area which requires future study.

Potential negative impacts of Muskellunge on other fish species are probably related to the size of waterbody and the composition of the resident fish community.  Larger waterbodies and those waters having a diverse forage fish community seem to be relatively unaffected by the presence of Muskellunge.  The presence/abundance of soft-rayed fish species likely reduces the predation on other resident fish species.

Other fish species can have negative impacts on the Muskellunge.  Northern Pike are known to have a competitive advantage over Muskellunge where they coexist.  Young Muskellunge are also subject to predation by other fishes including Largemouth Bass, Yellow Perch, Rock Bass and Walleye.

Based on this literature review several recommendations are offered.  These are related to initiating more quantified studies to document impacts (if any) when Muskellunge are introduced or become established in new waters, utilizing  new state-of-the-art techniques to determine diets and predatory-prey relationships amongst a broader range of fish community types (including salmonids and species at risk), and developing efforts to improve the public perception of Muskellunge.

The full report is available by clicking the link below.

Feeding Habits and Diet of Muskellunge (Final)

 

 

The Lake Simcoe Muskellunge Restoration Project

Introduction

Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy; « muskie ») are native to Lake Simcoe and were once quite common.  Lake Simcoe had a commercial fishery for muskie in the 1800s, which closed in 1904.  The muskie population started to decline in the 1930s due to a number of factors, including harvest, habitat loss, and changes to the Lake Simcoe fish communities.  The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and forestry (MNRF) socked the lake with fry and fingerlings during 1936 0 1969.  The brood stock was taken from the Kawartha Lakes and this introduction proved unsuccessful, possibly because this strain was not able to co-exist with northern pike.   The recreational fishery for muskie on Lakes Simcoe and Couchiching closed in 2005.

lsmrp_017
Brent Shirley from MNRF Midhurst District (left) and Wil Wegman from MNRF Aurora District with one of the muskie from Gloucester pool used for egg collections in the spring of 2015

By the early 2000s, a feasibility study and a habitat inventory determined that restoring the native muskie fishery to Lake Simcoe was a feasible fisheries management goal.  The study noted that efforts towards habitat restoration include broader benefits for the entire aquatic community.

Why Stock Muskie?

Muskie are a highly prized game fish.  They were once a significant member of the native fish community in Lake Simcoe and the goal is to make that happen once again.  The objective of the Lake Simcoe Muskellunge Restoration Project (LSMRP) is to re-establish a self-sustaining muskie population which does not rely on continuous stocking efforts.   To reach this objective, MNRF is stocking muskie to facilitate natural reproduction, evaluating the muskie population in Lake Simcoe through time, and enhancing muskie spawning and nursery habitats.  The Georgian Bay strain, which utilize similar spawning habitats and co-exist with northern pike, is seen to be a goo fit for Lake Simcoe stocking.  Although other populations around Lake Simcoe were tested for genetics, Gloucester Pool (near Port Severn) was the lake chosen as the most feasible source of Georgian Bay strain muskie for egg collections.

Muskie Stocking

The LSMRP began in 2005 and continues through to 2015 with support of key partners including Muskies Canada, Fleming College, Orillia Fish and Game Club and the Ontario Federation of anglers and Hunters.  During the fall of 2015, approximately 4,000 muskie were stocked; more than in any other year previously.  this brings the total number of young, hatchery-raised muskie fall fingerlings into Lake Simcoe through the LSMRP at 15,673.  Locations for the 2015 stocking included: Barnstable Bay, Talbot River, Talbot River mouth area, south side of Georgina Island, Cook’s Bay east and Cook’s Bay west.

Raising Muskie

Typically, there are two hatcheries where the fish are raised -= Fleming College in Lindsay and MNRF’s Blue Jay Creek on Manitoulin Island.  However, one of the key reasons we were able to stock more muskie in 2015 was the addition of MNRF’s Harwood Fish Culture Station.  Staff here offered to raise 700 surplus muskies (from Fleming College) and they did a great job raising these fish which contributed to the overall total stocked.  All three hatcheries experienced excellent success.  Muskie raised in these hatcheries are marked with Coded-Wire Tags.  If encountered during monitoring efforts, these Lake Simcoe muskie can be scanned with a device by MNRF staff that tells them if the muskie is stocked or or natural origin.  Genetic tests will also confirm their origin.

2015 Egg Collection

The spring eff collection on Gloucester Pool in 2015 was extremely successful.  Staff from MNRG’s Aurora and Midhurst Districts (both are responsible for managing Lake Simcoe) combined efforts once again to set six trap nets to capture muskie for the egg collection.  Staff captured 11 muskies and enough eggs were collected (~60,000 eggs) to fill both hatcheries to capacity.  All muskie captured in the nets are quickly sampled (measured, scales and spine taken for aging) and then tagged before they are carefully live released.

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Of course other species of fish are captured in the trap nets as well and staff record their numbers before they are live released. Below are the results of the bi-catch for both 2014 and 2015

Species 2014 2015
Yellow Perch 71 21
Rock Bass 77 199
Pumpkinseed Sunfish 221 239
Bluegill Sunfish 6 22
Black Crappie 198 210
Northern Pike 150 249
Longnosed Gar 4 57
Common Carp 2 8
Brown Bullhead 1,195 1,106
Channel Catfish 3 14
Smallmouth Bass 83 132
Largemouth Bass 115 216
Walleye 0 216
Round Goby 1 0
White Sucker 1 0
Northern Map Turtle 12 26
Stinkpot (Musk) Turtle 1 3
Bowfin 7 19
Total 2,050 2,509

Total 2,050 2,509

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Muskies Canada began an Adopt A Muskie Program in 2015 that allows donors to pledge $20.00 to help pay for the expenses of raising these your fish.

During the course of the year staff from all three hatcheries network regularly with one another, which helps maximize their efforts to raise healthy young muskie.  This year, Mark Newell, the manager of the Fleming Hatchery even developed a Facebook page set up for stakeholders and the public to follow the process in his hatchery of raising muskie from eggs to 7-12 inch fall fingerlings.  Muskies Canada began an Adopt A Muskie Program in 2015 that allows donors to pledge $20.00 to help pay for the expenses of raising these your fish. To learn how you can adopt your own muskie visit:  Adopt A Muskie

Notables

  • Over the years, lessons learned from the hatcheries help build a strong science-based approach to wild muskie rearing for the Province
  • Muskie eggs, feeder fish, and a small percentage of fingerlings are tested annually for diseases including Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia (VHS). Once again, all fish came back disease free in 2015
  • In November, 2011 the Lake Simcoe Muskie Restoration Project was selected as the winner of the Canadian Fishing Hall of Fame, Conservation Award

Lake Simcoe Muskie Monitoring

MNRF has several ongoing monitoring and habitat enhancement programs in place through Aurora District and Lake Simcoe Fisheries Assessment Unit.

Prior to 2014, 1998 was the last year MNRF caught and sampled a muskie on Lake Simcoe.  In the spring of 2014 however, MNRF utilized an electro-fishing boat to target historical known spawning areas and captured, sampled, tagged and released five muskie.  DNA testing afterwards proved these fish were of Kawartha lakes strain – not the stocked Georgian Bay strain.  These individual fish likely came through the Trent System but were obviously thriving in Simcoe.  During the spring of 2015, three additional muskie were caught electro-fishing, but these to were of Kawartha origin.

Over time, MNRF has documented some anecdotal evidence of the occasional muskie catch from anglers who inadvertently caught (and released) muskie when targeting other species.  For example in 2015, a bass angler in Cook’s Bay caught and released a muskie.  This location is on the opposite end of the lake from where the Kawartha Lakes strain muskie were sampled.  Between this sighting and others that have been reported, there is a possibility that this elusive fish of the Lake Simcoe or Georgian Bay strain could be surviving in Lake Simcoe one again.

In 2016 MNRF staff and partners look forward to another successful year for the Lake Simcoe Muskie Restoration Program. Until then a BIG thank you to all the organizations who have supported this project over the years:

• Muskies Canada

• Fleming College

• Orillia Fish and Game Club

• Twin Lakes Conservation Club

• Lafontaine Fish and Game Club

• North Simcoe Hunters and Anglers

• Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers

• Georgian Bay Bassmasters

• Gloucester Pool Cottage Association

• The Sexsmith family

• Ontario Streams

• Toronto Region Conservation Authority

• Department of Fisheries and Oceans

• Aurora Bassmasters

• Environment Canada

• Wisconsin DNR

• Midhurst District (MNRF)

• Aurora District (MNRF)

• Upper Great Lakes Management Unit (MNRF)

• MNRF Fish Policy Section

• Blue Jay Creek Fish Hatchery (MNRF)

• Harwood Fish Culture Station (MNRF)

• Lake Simcoe Fisheries Assessment Unit (MNRF)

• …AND OTHERS!