Since the introduction of Lake Trout into Yellowstone Lake, the invasive species has dominated the food chain. Lake trout are predatory and have since laid waste to many native species.
In the latest edition of the scientific journal, Science Advances, it was found the introduction of lake trout to Yellowstone Lake is having even broader environmental impacts than previously believed, impacting everything down to a microscopic level. According to the study “Zooplankton, cutthroat trout, river otters, osprey, bald eagles, bears and, likely, elk are among the creatures whose numbers, diet and behavior have been altered as a result of the presence of the invasive fish.”
“Our study illustrates the potential impact of a single, invasive predatory species on otherwise pristine ecosystems,” the researchers wrote, providing further support for Yellowstone National Park’s efforts to suppress the lake trout population in Yellowstone Lake.”
Anglers who catch Lake Trout in Yellowstone Lake are encouraged to kill any Lake Trout caught in the lake to aid in efforts to suppress their population and pressure on the overall ecosystem.
Authors of the article: Lusha Tronstad, a research scientist with the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database at the University of Wyoming; National Park Service scientists Todd Koel, Jeffrey Arnold, Kerry Gunther, Doug Smith and Patrick White; and John Syslo of the Montana Cooperative Fishery Research Unit at Montana State University.
Source: University of Wyoming.
Photo courtesy of Andrew Engel, @TheFlyDudes on Instagram.