Data from a long-term capture-recapture program were used to assess the status and dynamics of populations of two long-lived, federally endangered catostomids in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon. Lost River suckers (Deltistes luxatus) and shortnose suckers (Chasmistes brevirostris) have been captured and tagged with passive integrated transponder (PIT) tags during their spawning migrations in each year since 1995. In addition, beginning in 2005, individuals that had been previously PIT-tagged were re-encountered on remote underwater antennas deployed throughout sucker spawning areas. Captures and remote encounters during the spawning season in spring 2014 were incorporated into capture-recapture analyses of population dynamics.
Cormack-Jolly-Seber (CJS) open population capture-recapture models were used to estimate annual survival probabilities, and a reverse-time analog of the CJS model was used to estimate recruitment of new individuals into the spawning populations. In addition, data on the size composition of captured fish were examined to provide corroborating evidence of recruitment. Model estimates of survival and recruitment were used to derive estimates of changes in population size over time and to determine the status of the populations through 2013. Separate analyses were conducted for each species and also for each subpopulation of Lost River suckers (LRS). Shortnose suckers (SNS) and one subpopulation of LRS migrate into tributary rivers to spawn, whereas the other LRS subpopulation spawns at groundwater upwelling areas along the eastern shoreline of the lake.Keyword Tags: