Applications of Pheromones in Invasive Fish Control and Fishery Conservation

Peter W. Sorensen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

10 Scopus citations


The potency and specificity of pheromones, coupled with the ease with which they can be administered to the water, suggest enormous potential for their use in controlling nuisance/invasive fishes and in the conservation of fisheries. Possible uses include measuring the presence of pheromones in the water to estimate species abundance, adding pheromones to traps to either count or remove fish, adding pheromones to waterways to alter movement (distribution) patterns, and saturating the environment with pheromone to disrupt mating. Pheromones may either be synthesized and pumped into waterways or added indirectly via the addition and management of stocked fish. There are many ways in which they could supplement and enhance an integrated pest management (IPM) program. However, although many workers have speculated on the possible utility of pheromones, only half a dozen field experiments have been conducted to date, and results have been mixed owing to an incomplete understanding of the chemistry and function of the cues. Our experience with insect pheromones suggests that these challenges (which seem greater for fish than for insects) are solvable, and should be addressed given the genuine potential of pheromones to help provide a solution for problems that presently have none.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFish Pheromones and Related Cues
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781118794739
ISBN (Print)9780813823867
StatePublished - Mar 16 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


  • Conservation
  • Disruption
  • Eels
  • Invasive species
  • Judas fish
  • Monitoring
  • Re-direction
  • Removal
  • Sea lamprey
  • Trapping


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