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Eurasian tench (Tinca tinca): the next Great Lakes invader

Avlijaš, Sunčica, Ricciardi, Anthony, Mandrak, Nicholas E.
Canadian journal of fisheries and aquatic sciences 2018 v.75 no.2 pp. 169-179
Gastropoda, Tinca tinca, algae, bycatch, environmental impact, fish, invasive species, lakes, macrophytes, models, monitoring, parasites, pathogens, risk assessment, rivers, water quality, Great Lakes, North America, Saint Lawrence River
A globally invasive fish, Eurasian tench (Tinca tinca) is spreading through the St. Lawrence River and poses an imminent invasion threat to the Great Lakes. Following its illegal release into a tributary of the St. Lawrence River in 1991, tench has spread throughout the river’s main stem over the past decade, and its abundance in commercial fishing bycatch in the river has grown exponentially. The tench is a generalist benthic consumer with largely undocumented ecological impacts in North America. Reports from other invaded regions indicate that it can compete with other benthic fishes, host a diverse assemblage of parasites and pathogens, degrade water clarity in shallow lakes, limit submerged macrophyte growth, reduce gastropod populations, and promote benthic algal growth through top-down effects. Risk assessments and climate-match models indicate that the Great Lakes are vulnerable to tench invasion, and they signal the need for timely comprehensive actions, including development and implementation of monitoring and rapid-response protocols, including prevention or slowing of natural dispersal through canals.