Ohio Bird Conservation Initiative, The Ohio Fish and Wildlife Management Association, and the Ohio Chapter of The Wildlife Society are proud to announce a partnership to provide a series of bi-monthly online presentations called “Ohio Fish and Wildlife Presentation Series”. The series offers convenient opportunities for conservation professionals to learn about current issues related to fish and wildlife management and research in Ohio. Presentations are 1 hour long and registration is free.
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Presented by Jeff Tyson, Lake Erie Program Administrator, ODNR Division of Wildlife
In Lake Erie, inter-jurisdictional yellow perch and walleye resources are managed by multiple agencies under the auspices of the Great Lakes Fishery Commission’s Joint Strategic Plan for the Management of Great Lakes Fisheries. Because of the shared nature of these resources (i.e. fish do not respect jurisdictional boundaries), there is the potential for the actions (or harvest) of one jurisdiction to affect other jurisdictions, therefore, consensus decisions on, among other things, harvest, are required by individual agencies. Because of the differences in the nature of the fisheries that operate in different jurisdictions, the Lake Erie Committee agencies use harvest quotas (total maximum “safe” harvest levels) as tools for effectively managing the yellow perch and walleye populations in Lake Erie for sustainability. Each agency around Lake Erie is responsible for implementing individual regulations on various fisheries within their jurisdiction to ensure that their harvest does not exceed their portion of the harvest quota. In this webinar I will detail the process that the Lake Erie Committee uses for estimating the status (or health) of yellow perch and walleye populations in Lake Erie, establishing annual harvest quotas, how Ohio allocates these fishery resources among various user groups (recreational and commercial sectors), and how Ohio ensures that these quotas are not exceeded.
Presented by Joanne Rebbeck and Todd Hutchinson, US Forest Service Northern Research Station
Historically, fire was a frequent disturbance process in the mixed-oak forests of the central hardwoods region. Fire control has altered forest structure and composition. Today’s forests are more dense and the sustainability of oak and hickory dominance is now threatened by an abundance of shade-tolerant and fire sensitive tree species such as red maple, sugar maple, and beech. Prescribed fire has been advocated to promote and sustain open-structured mixed-oak forests and the plants and animals that have adapted to these communities. However, long-term research on fire effects is lacking. Highlights from research initiated in 1995 to quantify the effects of frequent and periodic prescribed fires on oak forest ecosystems in southeastern Ohio will be presented.
By Jordan K. Linnell, Wildlife Specialist, USDA APHIS Wildlife Services
The mute swan was released in North America in the late 1800’s for a seemingly innocent purpose, first turned up in Ohio just over 100 years ago. We wanted Mute Swans to adorn ponds but when we looked harder, we found an “ugly duckling” that destroys wetlands with feeding habits that increase water turbidity and reduce submerged aquatic vegetation. About the size of our native trumpeter swan, mute swans are not silent in their defense of territory and demand for the limited marsh space still found in Ohio. Our speakers will also tell us about the growing problem at both the state and regional levels as well as what steps are being taken to manage the species and mitigate damage.
Providing Angling Opportunities: Stocked Brown Trout Survival, Growth, and Movement in Three Ohio Streams
Curtis Wagner, Fisheries Biologist, ODNR
To diversify opportunities available to Ohio anglers, the Division of Wildlife (DOW) annually stocks 25,000 yearling (8-inch average length) brown trout into three program streams, including Clear Creek, Clear Fork of the Mohican River, and Mad River. These streams were previously selected for brown trout stocking based on a combination of adequate angler access, within-stream habitat, and water temperature. Program streams are managed with a combination of bag (two fish per day) and length (12-inch minimum for harvest) limits. Although program streams have been stocked since 1997, no standardized assessments of program success occurred since 2002.
During 2011–2014, DOW District Fish Management and Inland Fisheries Research Unit staff investigated stocked brown trout survival, growth, and movement, combining a batch-marking approach with twice annual standardized electrofishing surveys. One electrofishing survey in late winter assessed maximum relative abundances post-stocking with the other in late summer providing an index of survival through summer heat threats. Not surprisingly, we found that heat kills: when stream maximum temperatures exceeded 75 degrees F for more than seven days our standardized catch rates declined 75%. When cooler summers occurred, we found that brown trout took about two years to reach harvestable size (12 inches). On average, we found that brown trout more likely stayed near where they were stocked; when they did move, they more likely moved upstream than down.
Taken together, our findings (those presented briefly above plus other extended results) emphasize the particular importance of stream temperatures; that is, heat ultimately dictates brown trout success in Ohio. Further, fishery managers will leverage project results to optimize regulations and stocking strategies with the goal of increasing programmatic efficiency while continuing to provide anglers with diverse opportunities.
Dirk Cochran, Law Enforcement Program Administrator, Ohio Division of Wildlife
The Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact is an agreement that recognizes suspension of hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses in member states. This means that illegal activities in one state can affect a person’s hunting or fishing privileges in all participating states. Any person whose license privileges or rights are suspended in a member state may also be suspended in Ohio. If a person’s hunting, fishing, or trapping rights are suspended in Ohio, they may be suspended in member states as well. You will learn the history of the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact and how it has become a valuable tool used in Ohio and across the country.
Ken Duren, Wildlife Biologist, ODNR Division of Wildlife
Barn owls were once very common in Ohio, but experienced drastic population declines. Now, their populations are starting to recover. Ken Duren with the Ohio Division of Wildlife will be discussing the interesting story of barn owls in Ohio. You will learn about the history of barn owls in Ohio, including why they declined, what was done to bring them back and what will be done to ensure their future in Ohio.
Mike Tonkovich, Deer Program Manager, ODNR Division of Wildlife
Interest in deer management among the hunting public has never been greater. While some wildlife professionals fear that the current movement may compromise their ability to do their job as a state, federal, or provincial wildlife biologist, I not only welcome the enthusiasm, but encourage it. Unfortunately, success takes more than encouragement; it takes cooperation. Very few properties in Ohio are large enough to meet the year round needs of the white-tailed deer. Consequently, most entrepreneurs find themselves frustrated with poor results as they quickly realize that you cannot manage deer that spend a majority of their time on someone else’s property. However, by working together through a deer hunting cooperative with those neighbors that share a common goal, you can make a management difference, not only in the deer population but the habitat as well. While the name may be new, the concept of a Deer Management Cooperative is not. It involves nothing more than working together to achieve a common goal that few can achieve on their own because of property size limitations. This presentation explores the development of deer management cooperatives, their limitations, and their role in Ohio’s deer program
Jon Cepek, USDA Wildlife Services
Wildlife on airports is a very challenging situation for airports, the Federal Aviation Administration and wildlife professionals. Wildlife are often attracted to airports because of food sources, open water and habitat. This results in a situation hazardous to both wildlife and the flying public. An aircraft striking wildlife often results in the death of the animal, and damage to the aircraft. Sometimes this can be so significant that the aircraft is destroyed and there are human injuries or fatalities. Flight 1549 striking Canada geese and going down in the Hudson river is a recent high profile example of what can occur when an aircraft strikes wildlife. This webinar focuses on the challenges of managing wildlife in an airport environment. Wildlife strike information is presented, and strategies to manage wildlife attractants and wildlife on airports was discussed.
Kevin Page, Ohio Division of Wildlife
Muskellunge is a popular sport fish that is prized by anglers for the large sizes they can attain. During the early 1900s, natural populations of muskellunge declined due to pollution and dam construction, and in an effort to rebuild these fisheries, the Ohio Division of Wildlife developed a muskellunge stocking program during the 1950s. Today, nine reservoirs are stocked with muskellunge, providing quality put-grow-and-take fisheries across Ohio, along with an opportunity to experience catching a trophy muskellunge once again. Muskellunge anglers have been vital to the success of this program through reporting of their catches over the last 50 years. The Division of Wildlife is now partnering with anglers on a tagging study that seeks ways of improving these fisheries by evaluating muskellunge population dynamics using angler reports of tagged fish within reservoirs and monitoring movement of muskellunge out of reservoirs using automated tag readers below the dams. This presentation provides an overview of the Division of Wildlife’s muskellunge program and highlights the new tagging study.
Beyond occurrence: Monitoring bird populations with atlas data. Insights from the Second Atlas of Breeding Birds in Ohio.
Matthew Shumar, Coordinator of the Second Ohio Breeding Bird Atlas
Over 1,000 volunteers in Ohio contributed more than 1 million breeding bird observations from 2006-2011. Additionally, highly trained field staff conducted nearly 15,000 abundance surveys, resulting in a database of bird observations that allows for the most thorough review of breeding birds in Ohio to date. The Second Atlas of Breeding Birds in Ohio will provide information and change analyses for more than 200 species, as well as detailed population estimates and spatially explicit densities for up to 100 species. These data and results will not only be informative to Ohio’s birders and nature enthusiasts but will provide crucial information for biologists and land managers within the state. Combining citizen science with rigorous field protocols and technological advances allows for an unlimited array of possibilities for ecological sciences.
If you would like to assist with planning future presentations, give a presentation, or suggest a speaker please contact Ken Duren by email Kenneth.firstname.lastname@example.org or call (740)362-2410, ext. 124.