My current work focuses on understanding why some species of introduced fish become invasive in some geographic regions but not in others and how predation, disturbance and ecosystem productivity play a role in that. I study various aspects of the behavior and ecology of invasive fish including seasonal migrations, winter aggregations, cognitive aspects of foraging behavior and social dynamics. I also study the effects of invasive fish on lakes (water quality, nutrients, biodiversity) using whole-lake experiments.
Current research projects include: 1) Developing common carp-specific toxins by studying social aggregations and learning abilities, 2) common carp biocontrol by native predators, 3) using the Whooshh technology to remove invasive fish during their spawning migrations, 4) manipulating reproductive cycle of carp in the laboratory to facilitate genetic engineering experiments (collaboration with Dr. Smanski), 5) determining values of AIS management in Minnesota (collaboration with Drs. Levers and Pradhananga).
Bajer, P. G., Claus, A. C., Wein, J., & Kukulski, E. (2018). Field test of a low-voltage, portable electric barrier to guide invasive common carp into a mock trap during seasonal migrations. MANAGEMENT OF BIOLOGICAL INVASIONS, 9(3), 291-297.
Bajer, P. G., M. Beck, J. P. Hundt. 2018. Are non-native invaders worse than their native proxies: comparison of two benthic fishes in North America. Hydrobiologia
Poole J, B. W. Sauey, J. J. Amberg, P. G. Bajer. 2018. Assessing the efficacy of corn-based bait containing antimycin-a to control common carp populations using laboratory and pond experiments. Biological Invasions
Bajer, P. G. 2018. A decade of common carp research and management in Minnesota. Lake Line.
Bartodziej, W., P> W. Sorensen, P. G. Bajer, K. Pilgrim, S. Blood. 2018. A Minnesota story: urban shallow lake management. Lake Line.
I am the founder and owner of a University of Minnesota startup (Carp Solutions LLC) that helps watershed districts and lake managers manage their common carp populations. For more information go to www.CarpSolutionsMN.com