Adults migrate from the sea or lake, school at mouths of rivers, and move upstream when rains increase river flow (Ref. 1998). As a rule, the winter entries (December and January) occur in the southern part of the range, with appearance in fresh water becoming progressively earlier to the north (Ref. 30381, 30382, 30383). At the spawning area, the female finds a spot and digs a pitt. At this point she is aggressive toward other females. While digging, an attendant male courts her or is busy driving away other males. As soon as the pitt is completed, the female drops into it and is immediately followed by the male. The pair are side by side, they open their mouth, quiver and release egg and sperm (Ref. 27547). At this point, other males move in and release sperm into the nest (Ref. 1998). The female quickly moves to the upstream edge of the nest and starts digging a new pitt, covering the eggs. The whole process is repeated for several days until the female deposits all her eggs. The male then leaves and may seek another female. The spent female usually continues to dig, until she dies (Ref. 27547).Reproductive strategy: synchronous ovarian organization, determinate fecundity (Ref. 51846).
- Scott, W.B. and E.J. Crossman 1973 Freshwater fishes of Canada. Bull. Fish. Res. Board Can. 184:1-966. (Ref. 1998)
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