January 11, 2013




Modeling workshop: Alewife and smelt interactions in Lake Champlain

Sponsored by Lake Champlain Sea Grant

Date: January 11, 2013  (Snow date: January 14)


Location:  SUNY Plattsburgh, Alumni Room, Angell College Center

Cost:   No Charge

Pre-Registration contact: Janet.Manor@plattsburgh.edu

This workshop will facilitate an understanding of the effects of alewife on native forage fish dynamics and by extension, the larger ecosystem of Lake Champlain.   Fisheries managers will become familiar (in a general sense) with a model describing alewife/smelt interaction in space and time, and how changes in several parameters influence the abundance/composition of our “new” forage base.  The model will then be used to explore future possible changes in management policies (i.e. altered stocking levels/species ratios and changes in control of sea lamprey and cormorants) to better understand the possible outcomes associated with those policy changes.  These management strategies are not explicitly part of the model and will be explored through hypothesized effects on abundance, growth and distributions.


9:00     Introductions/Rationale – Malchoff/Parrish

            Why use models to explore management scenarios? –  Sullivan  

            Lake Champlain Alewife-Smelt Interactions Model – Simonin/Rudstam/Sullivan/Parrish/Pientka

·      Model Overview

o   Functional relationships included.

o   Data, inputs, outputs.

·      Relating this model to other aspects of Lake Champlain ecology

o   Using Proxies (light, temperature, population density) to Represent Biological Drivers (e.g. phosphorous, zebra mussels)

·      Example Application (Influence of adult alewife density on YOY smelt mortality.)

11:30 – 12:30 Lunch  (free to those pre-registered). 

Exploring Scenarios:  What happens if? –  Simonin/Rudstam/Sullivan

·      Alternative Adult Alewife Density Levels

·      Temperature stratification changes (e.g., resulting from climate changes)

·      Water transparency changes (e.g., resulting from lake productivity changes)

·      Rainbow smelt or alewife growth rates change

Future Directions – Simonin/Rudstam/Sullivan

·      Population Dynamics Over Time

·      Altered Salmonid Stocking Levels/Species Ratios

·      Alternative Predation Scenarios

3:00 Wrap up – Malchoff/Parrish