Stories

Lake trout are making a comeback, and no one knows why

Trout in a bucket
Trout in a bucket. Photo: Joshua Brown / University of Vermont

Scientists have spent their entire careers trying to understand why some trout no longer survive in Lake Champlain and the Great Lakes. Now, they've returned and researchers don’t know why.

Why it matters: Around the world, large lakes ecosystems, which drive the economies of cities that border them, are being threatened. “One thing [this return] demonstrates is that these lakes have enormous recuperative powers,” says Dave Fielder, fisheries research biologist at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. “If we can provide relief from some of the stressors, the lake will respond. Sometimes, very quickly.”