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Great Lakes Article:

Lampreys an ecological disaster
The Birmingham News
Published July 08, 2004


Sea lampreys gained access to Lake Erie when the Welland Canal around Niagara Falls was completed in 1829, but they were not found in Lake Erie until 1921, almost a century later. Then the invasion quickened. Sea lampreys were found in Lake Huron in 1932, in Lake Michigan in 1936 and in Lake Superior in 1946.

They live off the blood and body fluids of adult fish and were the major cause of the collapse of lake trout, whitefish and chub in the Great Lakes during the 1940s and 1950s.

The present "hot zone" for sea lampreys is the St. Marys River. From there they migrate into Lake Huron and northern Lake Michigan, where the adult sea lamprey population is nearly as large as it was 40 years ago.

Wildlife authorities spend about $15 million a year to control sea lampreys in the Great Lakes. Source: U.S. Geological Survey --

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