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SURVIVAL OF STONECATS (NOTURUS FLAVUS) DURING A STREAM TREATMENT
WITH THE LAMPRICIDE TFM (3-TRIFLUOROMETHYL-4-NITROPHENOL)
Representatives from state and environmental organizations in the state of Ohio have expressed concern about the effect that lampricides may have on non-target species in treated systems. The stonecat was chosen as an indicator for non-target fish by representatives from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency because it is the most common of the potentially affected fish species. The purpose of this study was to determine the proportion of a stonecat population that survives a TFM treatment and to demonstrate that their continued existence in TFM treated streams is not jeopardized. The study was conducted at two large riffle sections of the Chippewa River (Isabella County, Michigan) that were surveyed using AbP-2 backpack electrofishers before, and about 2 weeks, three months, and 1 year after the TFM treatment. Dead stonecats were collected during the treatment and survey counts of marked and unmarked stonecats before, during and after the stream treatment were to be used to estimate the survival of stonecats exposed to TFM. Fewer stonecats than expected were captured during all surveys and only one marked fish was recaptured. In addition, evidence collected during field collections suggested that there was substantial movement into and out of the survey area, violating the assumption of a closed system. Therefore, the proportion that survived the treatment could not be estimated.