Habitat suitability index models: Muskellunge

This document is part of the Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) model series which provides habitat information useful for impact assessment and habitat management. Several types of habitat information are provided. The Habitat Use Information section is largely constrained to those data that can be used to derive quantitative relationships between key environmental variables and habitat suitability. This information provides the foundation for the HSI model and may be useful in the development of other models more appropriate to specific assessment or evaluation needs. The HSI Model section documents the habitat model and includes information pertinent to its application. The model synthesizes the habitat use information into a framework appropriate for field application and is scaled to produce an index value between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) and 1.0 (optimum habitat). The HSI Model section includes information about the geographic range and seasonal appl ication of the model, its current verification status, and a list of the model variables with recommended measurement techniques for each variable. The model is a formalized synthesis of biological and habitat information published in the scientific literature and may include unpublished information reflecting the opinions of identified experts. Habitat information about wildlife species frequently is represented by scattered data sets collected during different seasons and years and from different sites throughout the range of a species. The model presents this broad data base in a formal, logical, and simplified manner. The assumptions necessary for organizing and synthesizing the species-habitat information into the model are discussed. The model should be regarded as a hypothesis of species-habitat relationships and not as a statement of proven cause and effect relationships. The model may have merit in planning wildlife habitat research studies about a species, as well as in providing an estimate of the relative suitability of habitat for that species. User feedback concerning model improvements and other suggestions that may increase the utility and effectiveness of this habitat-based approach to fish and wildlife planning are encouraged.