Habitat loss, invasive species, and the longer-term impacts of climate change are serious concerns for Great Lakes fishery researchers and managers, according to an article in the Journal of Great Lakes Research.
Researchers conducted focus groups with researchers and managers who readily connected the dots between specific concerns and the wider effects of climate change. “Climate change and habitat are not independent,” commented one Lake Ontario participant. But while research is available on climate impacts on the Great Lakes fishery, it isn’t easily accessible or comprehensible for fishery managers.
“These are the men and women who are on the frontlines. They make myriad decisions every day about fisheries and fishery management, and they need as complete an understanding [of climate change] as humanly possible,” said Marc Gaden, Communications Manager and Legislative Liaison with the Great Lakes Fishery Commission.
At the same time, “area scientists are also on the frontlines of being sources of good information. They are in a good position to understand what the anglers’ expectations are.”