BY ANGELA BARAN, GENOA NFH
Genoa National Fish Hatchery (NFH) received its first batch of rainbow trout eggs from Ennis National Fish Hatchery for the new production season in December. The hatchery receives a total of 200,000 Arlee strain rainbow trout eggs each winter to be used as a disease free forage (food) source for the host fish in the mussel program. Channel catfish are infested each fall with winged mapleleaf mussel glochidia (baby mussels to be) and are held in tanks over the winter until they can go into mussel cages in the spring. The resulting mussel larvae will drop off their host fish and grow in the bottom of the cage for another year and a half until they are large enough to avoid predation and survive well in their stocking locations. In addition to the channel catfish, Genoa NFH holds over smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, freshwater drum and walleye to be used as mussel hosts for several species of mussels that brood in the spring. By obtaining the disease free eggs and hatching them on station, the hatchery can ensure a very nutritious and natural food source for the fish, as well as preventing any transmission of outside diseases.
More Mussels Headed Out the Door
BY NATHAN ECKERT, GENOA NFH
Late this fall Genoa National Fish Hatchery (NFH) began delivery of mussels for a new research project with the US Geological Survey in La Crosse, Wisconsin. The project seeks to determine the toxicity of a lampricide to native mussels. We were given a list of 13 potential species from across the Great Lakes Region to test and were asked to provide a small number of both the adult and sub-adult life stages for up to six species. We decided to focus on species that are currently being propagated, or could be readily collected. Through our partners in other states we were able to acquire three species of adults and four species of sub-adults. Annual production at Genoa NFH added another sub-adult species, and three additional species were collected from wild locations in the Upper Mississippi River Watershed by Genoa NFH divers. In total, six species of adults and five species of sub-adults were provided. This delivery would not have been possible without our partners who were willing to send small numbers of animals they already had on-hand. Results of the research will determine if the chemical in question is safe for native freshwater mussels and that information will be used to shape future management of streams in the Great Lakes Basin.