HabiChats! Blood-sucking vampires or alluring fishes? Insights into Oregon Lampreys

Lampreys are a group of ancient fishes with no jaws, paired fins, or bones. Are they blood-sucking vampires to be reviled or are they alluring fishes? Their seeming “alien” appearance and cryptic behavior can lead to fear and ignorance. Ann and Ben will describe the tremendous diversity of lampreys in Oregon and their life histories and habitats. They will also present special considerations for fish passage and river restoration.

SPEAKER BIOS:  Ben is the Statewide Lamprey Coordinator for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW).  Ben works at the intersection of research, policy, and management to benefit Oregon’s native lampreys and human use of them.  He has worked for over 13 years with ODFW and OSU in various roles conducting smolt monitoring, smolt survival studies, leading the ODFW aging lab, and conducting lamprey life history and ecology research.  Ben was a former President of the Oregon Chapter of the American Fisheries Society.  Ben earned a BS in Biology from Central Michigan University, an MS in Zoology from the University of Guelph, and a Doctorate in Fisheries Science from Oregon State University. 

Ann started counting lamprey for the US Fish and Wildlife Service on the Trinity and Klamath Rivers in 1994.  She has lived and worked for USFWS for 20 years in Portland, working on fish passage and instream habitat, but never lost her fondness for lamprey.  Ann is involved with the Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative, helping to promote lamprey best management practices and improve lamprey passage.  Ann has a BA from Austin College (TX) and a MS from Humboldt State University (CA), where she studied bat rays