Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Utah
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Utah Project

FWS: Pyramid Lake Fishery Evaluation to evaluate Lahontan cutthroat trout performance and identify limiting factors for the native fish community

April 2011 - December 2019


Participating Agencies

  • U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Pyramid Lake, Nevada is one of the last remaining strongholds for lacustrine Lahontan cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii henshawi; LCT); almost all other large lake populations have undergone population declines or extirpation as a result of habitat degradation, over-harvest, and water diversions, all compunded by the stocking of non-native species. In 2015, we completed a comprehensive research project driven by critical uncertainties surrounding the performance of the fishery and stocked LCT across space and time, the role of exotic Sacramento perch (Archioplites interruptus), the potential for native forage fish recovery, and the link between fish performance and lake productivity and carrying capacity. The goals of this latter body of work were to analyze and synthesize all available data possible (primarily available LCT mark-recapture, creel, and stocking data), including any new data for recent years, to estimate critical performance and vital rates for LCT including but not limited to those outlined below as tasks. Projct partners include: Utah State University (USU), Pyramid Lake Fisheries (PLF, the Tribe), and the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The overall goal of this part of our multi-year study is to provide a draft framework for adaptive management of the fishery and ecosystem of Pyramid Lake

Research Publications Publication Date
Heredia, N. and P. Budy. 2018. Trophic ecology of Lahontan Cutthroat Trout Oncorhynchus Clarkii Henshawi: historical predator-prey interaction supports native apex predator in unique desert lake. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society. 147:842–854, DOI: 10.1002/tafs.1006. USGS FSP: IP-066465. | Abstract January 2018