Historical trends in body growth of five Ontario muskellunge populations

Muskellunge management (Esox masquinongy) in Ontario has primarily focused on harvest control through minimum size limits, requiring information on the growth potential, responses and variability of populations. We examined historical muskellunge body growth trends as recorded in the cleithrum bone from five muskellunge populations, including two populations with extended data sets (overall n=456). Two measures were digitally collected – an index of annual growth and cleithrum size at age eight – and linearly regressed against log-transformedmean daily summer temperatures. There were no significant correlations between temperature and annual growth (p = 0.120 to 0.762)