Posted by: csdailyblog | November 4, 2010

Conserve School Students Observe Trout Spawning

Wes (Wes Jahns, DNR Vilas County Fisheries Specialist) telling Conserve School students how the holding net works.

For this post, I’m handing the blog over to Conserve School student Josh K., expert fisherman and experienced fishing guide, who knows infinitely more about fish than I do. Below is his explanation of the trout spawning on Black Oak Lake, one of our campus lakes. Josh also provided the captions for the photos. Interested students were able to join Science Teacher Robert Eady one recent evening, and the following morning, to observe DNR staff members collecting trout eggs and tagging trout during the spawning. Thanks for sharing your expertise and providing this background information, Josh!

The lake trout in Black Oak Lake are unique. They have remained genetically unaltered for 10,000 years. You can’t see this from the outside, but you can see the differences between Black Oak Lake trout and other lake trout when you look at their genetics.  This tagging and spawning is done every 5 to 7 years in Black Oak Lake.  The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources goes out and sets gill nets and then takes the trout that have been caught and puts them in a big holding net.  After getting all the fish out of the gill nets, the DNR will then go through and tag the trout and take down their length.  The next day the hatchery comes and they will take the eggs out of the female and the milt out of the males to fertilize them.  Those fish are then released and the eggs are taken back to the hatchery where they will be raised and then put into a different lake. 

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