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Explicit consideration of uncertainty in Great Lakes fisheries management: decision analysis of sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) control in the St. Marys River

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We used decision analysis to assist the Great Lakes Fishery Commission (GLFC) with sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) control in the St. Marys River, which connects Lake Superior to Lake Huron and until recently has been a major source of sea lamprey infestation of Lake Huron. The process involved decision-makers, managers, and experts in an analysis of management options, objectives, and critical uncertainties affecting the expected performance of alternative choices. We developed quantitative assessments of uncertainty about sea lamprey demographics and about the implementation effectiveness of three pest control options: trapping adult lampreys, sterile male releases, and lampricide treatment. We used a stochastic simulation model to forecast future parasitic sea lamprey abundance in Lake Huron for 10 management options. Management options that included enhanced levels of trapping and sterile male releases exhibited the best performance for all measures. Our analysis substantially influenced the GLFC strategy for the St. Marys River, providing an example of how explicit consideration of uncertainty using decision analysis can influence fishery management decisions.

Nous utilisons l’analyse décisionnelle pour aider la Commission des pêcheries des Grands Lacs (GLFC) à contrôler la grande lamproie marine (Petromyzon marinus) dans la rivière St. Marys qui relie le lac Supérieur au lac Huron et qui, jusqu’à récemment, était une source majeure d’infestation des grandes lamproies marines au lac Huron. Le processus réunit les décideurs, les gestionnaires et les experts pour une analyse des options de gestion, des objectifs et des incertitudes critiques qui affectent la performance attendue des divers choix. Nous avons mis au point des évaluations quantitatives de l’incertitude relative à la démographie de la grande lamproie marine, ainsi qu’à l’efficacité de la mise en oeuvre de trois choix de lutte contre ces ravageurs, soit le trappage des lamproies adultes, la libération de mâles stériles et le traitement au lampricide. Nous utilisons un modèle de simulation stochastique pour prédire l’abondance future des grandes lamproies marines parasites au lac Huron en fonction de 10 options de gestion. De toutes les options de gestion, celles qui incluent une augmentation du trappage des adultes et de la libération des mâles stériles connaissent les meilleures performances. Notre analyse a influencé de façon importante la stratégie de la GLFC dans la rivière St. Marys; c’est là un exemple qui montre comment la prise en considération explicite de l’incertitude à l’aide d’une analyse décisionnelle peut influencer les choix de gestion des pêches.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2007

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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