FRESHWATER CRAYFISH | 2010| vol. 17| Research Article
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Full Citation: Litvan ME, DiStefano RJ, Walker KJ and Gao X (2010). A recreational fishery for longpincered crayfish, Orconectes longidigitus (Faxon), in Table Rock Lake, Missouri, USA: Effects of environmental factors on trapping success. Freshwater Crayfish 17: 91-101.
Longpincered crayfish, Orconectes longidigitus (Faxon, 1898), native to Missouri and Arkansas (USA), are among the largest crayfishes in North America. An emerging fishery for them at Table Rock Lake in southwest Missouri represents a unique opportunity for recreationalists and resource managers. However, little information exists concerning this crayfish’s life history, resilience to exploitation, or how it may be effectively sampled by biologists. We examined how baited trap catch rates (CPUE), and sex ratios of longpincered crayfish varied among sites and depths across the year, and whether CPUE was related to environmental variables. From September 2006 – September 2007 we sampled monthly at two sites representing distinct habitats. Twenty traps were deployed at each of three depths. Temperature loggers were deployed with traps. We measured water temperature and dissolved oxygen vertical profiles and estimated substrate coarseness composition at each site. Crayfish CPUE was typically highest in shallows, during summer and mid-autumn and at the gently sloping cove site than the steeply sloping ledge site. Temperature was related to CPUE. We observed a significant season by dissolved oxygen interaction, probably related to thermal stratification that influenced CPUE. Results will influence design of studies examining crayfish population distribution and dynamics, and effects of exploitation.
Keywords: exploitation; Longpincered crayfish; reservoir crayfish fishery; sampling
Article Language: English
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