Response of larval sea lampreys (Petromyzon marinus) to pulsed DC electrical stimuli in laboratory experiments

Anjanette K. Bowen, John W. Weisser, Roger A. Bergstedt, Felix Famoye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Four electrical factors that are used in pulsed DC electrofishing for larval sea lampreys (Petromyzon marinus) were evaluated in two laboratory studies to determine the optimal values to induce larval emergence over a range of water temperatures and conductivities. Burrowed larvae were exposed to combinations of pulsed DC electrical factors including five pulse frequencies, three pulse patterns, and two levels of duty cycle over a range of seven voltage gradients in two separate studies conducted at water temperatures of 10, 15, and 20°C and water conductivities of 25, 200, and 900 μS/cm. A four-way analysis of variance was used to determine significant (α = 0.05) influences of each electrical factor on larval emergence. Multiple comparison tests with Bonferroni adjustments were used to determine which values of each factor resulted in significantly higher emergence at each temperature and conductivity. Voltage gradient and pulse frequency significantly affected emergence according to the ANOVA model at each temperature and conductivity tested. Duty cycle and pulse pattern generally did not significantly influence the model. Findings suggest that a setting of 2.0 V/cm, 3 pulses/sec, 10% duty, and 2:2 pulse pattern seems the most promising in waters of medium conductivity and across a variety of temperatures. This information provides a basis for understanding larval response to pulsed DC electrofishing gear factors and identifies electrofisher settings that show promise to increase the efficiency of the gear during assessments for burrowed sea lamprey larvae.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-182
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Great Lakes Research
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
StatePublished - 2003


  • Electrofishing
  • Pulse frequency
  • Sea lamprey
  • Voltage gradient


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