Predicting the impacts of Heterosporis sutherlandae on the yield of a yellow perch population: An integrated modeling approach (2017 MSc)

Heterosporosis a disease caused by a microsporidian parasite, Heterosporis sutherlandae, and can result in lesions in the host muscle tissue. I developed a stochastic, cohort-based integrated disease model to predict the impacts of this parasite on a yellow perch (Perca flavescens) population. I addressed if heterosporosis can cause large losses of yield and which factors are most important to yield. I conducted field and laboratory work to parameterize my model. I found that heterosporosis was rare in all field sites and sampling seasons (6% average prevalence). Transmission by feeding infected tissue ranged between 23% and 31%, while only 2% of minnows exposed by near direct contact became infected. My model indicates that heterosporosis may become extinct in Leech Lake in 25 years, is unlikely to cause significant losses of yield, and that yield is more sensitive to bioenergetic parameters (183% change in yield) than to disease (<1% change in yield).

Tomamichel MM, NC Hodgins, PA Venturelli, NB Phelps (2011) The prevalence and potential fisheries consequences of Heterosporis sutherlandae in a Minnesota lake. PLoS ONE 13(6): e01995808

Escobar LE, S Mallez, M McCartney, C Lee, DP Zielinski, R Ghosal, PG Bajer, C Wagner, B Nash, MM Tomamichel, PA Venturelli, PP Mathai, A Kokotovich, J Escobar-Dodero, NBD Phelps (2018) Aquatic invasive species in the Great Lakes region: an overview. Reviews in Fisheries Science and Aquaculture 126:121-138

Honsey AE, GL Loppnow, TJ Martin, LA Schroeder, MM Tomamichel, NT Huempfner, PA Venturelli (2018) Reeling them in: initial insight into the factors affecting presentation attendance at American Fisheries Society meetings. Fisheries 43:98-105

Megan’s Google Scholar profile