News Detail

In the Great Lakes, the Pandemic Disrupted Sea Lamprey Control

By: Rebecca Redelmeier

It’s a gray morning on Lake Ontario when Will Sampson, a sports fishing guide and recreational angler, sees one of the fishing reels on his father’s boat jerk. He reels it in. On the other end of the line is a Chinook salmon that he estimates weighs 22 pounds — a great catch, save for one wriggling detail: Latched into the salmon’s side dangles a two-foot long sea lamprey, suction-cup mouth clinging on, one eye peeking around its host’s fin. In its lifetime, that sea lamprey could kill up to 40 pounds of fish; the hooked Chinook was its latest target.

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