Scientific Name: Ichthyomyzon castaneus
Taxonomy Group: Fishes
Range: Saskatchewan, Manitoba
Last COSEWIC Assessment: November 2010
Last COSEWIC Designation: Non-active
SARA Status: Schedule 3, Special Concern - (SARA Schedule 1 provisions do not apply)
Image of Chestnut Lamprey
The Chestnut Lamprey is a small parasitic lamprey whose head ends in a buccal funnel. This lamprey has slender and sharp teeth, and a smooth leathery skin with no scales. Chestnut Lampreys are dark grey to olive, or yellow brown above with lighter underparts; at spawning time, the adults become blue-black. Chestnut Lampreys measure approximately 325 mm.
Distribution and Population
In Canada, the Chestnut Lamprey is found in some rivers of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. There are no estimates of the size of the Canadian population of this species.
Chestnut Lampreys inhabit moderate-sized rivers and large creeks. Spawning occurs from mid-June to late July, in areas of coarse gravel.
Chestnut Lampreys mate once between 7 and 9 years of age; they mate, spawn and then die shortly after the egg-laying has been completed. The young fish hide in burrows and feed on algae, plankton and protozoans. The adults attack a wide variety of stream fishes: they attach themselves to the body of the fish and consume its body fluids and muscles. These lampreys are only active at night; during the day, they hide from the light under rocks or under the cover of river banks.
The areas suitable for spawning of the lamprey are disappearing due to siltation and pollution. The deterioration of river environments also threatens their food supply. Toxic chemical pollution can cause mortality at all ages; eutrophication can cause mortality in the young.
PLEASE NOTE: Not all COSEWIC reports are currently available on the SARA Public Registry. Most of the reports not yet available are status reports for species assessed by COSEWIC prior to May 2002. Other COSEWIC reports not yet available may include those species assessed as Extinct, Data Deficient or Not at Risk. In the meantime, they are available on request from the COSEWIC Secretariat.
2 record(s) found.
COSEWIC Status Reports
COSEWIC Annual Reports
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