Esocids are ecologically important predators that often support fisheries. Although numerous populations are thriving, stock depletion or extirpation in many waters have occurred due to overfishing, habitat alteration, and disease. Changes in angler attitudes over the last 30 years have shifted Muskellunge fisheries from catch and harvest towards catch and release, alleviating many problems associated with overfishing. However, harvest of other esocids remains common, and overfishing is an issue for some populations. Historical challenges have been exacerbated by more recent environmental changes and unevaluated propagation practices—these issues must be addressed to successfully sustain or restore populations. Unfortunately, esocids also can be ecologically disruptive when introduced outside their native ranges and may adversely affect native species. This symposium will provide a forum for AFS members and meeting participants to present up-to-date information on the biology, ecology, and management of esocids from throughout their native and introduced ranges.
- Derek Crane, Coastal Carolina University, [email protected]
- Kevin Kapuscinski, Lake Superior State University
- Jordan Weeks, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources