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

Wisconsin Fishery Project

Dynamics and demographics of Cisco populations in Wisconsin lakes

January 2014 - June 2015


Participating Agencies

  • Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Cisco Coregonus artedi are native to many water bodies in Wisconsin. Cisco are important to food web dynamics because they serve as primary prey for large, economically-important piscivores such as walleyes and muskellunge and because they influence lower trophic levels through planktivory. Despite their importance, a comprehensive evaluation of the dynamics and demographics of cisco populations in Wisconsin has not been conducted. Describing cisco population characteristics across a broad spatial scale will provide a better understanding of how abiotic and biotic variables affect cisco in Wisconsin. Our objective is to determine if abiotic and biotic variables affect growth rates, recruitment patterns, and the age and size structure of cisco populations in Wisconsin. This is a collaborative project with Wisconsin DNR and we are currently processing cisco that were collected during the 2013 sampling season; additional fish will be collected in 2014.