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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Fish Distribution and Utilization of Seasonal Habitats in Grass-Seed Producing Fields

Authors
item Colvin, R - OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
item Gerth, W - OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
item Boyer, K - OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
item Giannico, G - OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
item Li, J - OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
item Steiner, Jeffrey
item Griffith, Stephen

Submitted to: American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 31, 2003
Publication Date: June 30, 2003
Citation: COLVIN, R., GERTH, W., BOYER, K., GIANNICO, G., LI, J., STEINER, J.J., GRIFFITH, S.M. FISH DISTRIBUTION AND UTILIZATION OF SEASONAL HABITATS IN GRASS-SEED PRODUCING FIELDS. Abstract No. 9800974. AMERICAN FISHERIES SOCIETY ANNUAL MEETING. 2003.

Interpretive Summary: In the Pacific Northwest, floodplains and seasonal waterways in low gradient agricultural fields may provide winter habitat to several species of native fish during high flow periods. In the winters of 2001-02 and 2002-03, the composition of fish communities and the spatial and temporal distributions of their species were examined in four sub-basins of the Upper Willamette River in western Oregon. Grass seed production is the predominant land use in these sub-basins and all our sampling locations were in seasonal creeks ran through agricultural fields. Fish were sampled from November to May using minnow traps and electrofishing. Standard fish habitat variables were recorded, as well as riparian vegetation features, water quality and discharge. Samples of both terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates were collected. Ten native species of fish (including four salmonids) were present in these habitats and were differentially distributed in response to drainage features. Although few to no fish were found in drainages directly feeding into the river's main-stem, fish numbers decreased as distance from the main-stem increased. During this study, fish abundance or community composition were not associated with riparian vegetation or water quality. Fish response to food availability and abundance will be examined during the winter of 2003-04.

Technical Abstract: In the Pacific Northwest, floodplains and seasonal waterways in low gradient agricultural fields may provide winter habitat to several species of native fish during high flow periods. In the winters of 2001-02 and 2002-03, the composition of fish communities and the spatial and temporal distributions of their species were examined in four sub-basins of the Upper Willamette River in western Oregon. Grass seed production is the predominant land use in these sub-basins and all our sampling locations were in seasonal creeks ran through agricultural fields. Fish were sampled from November to May using minnow traps and electrofishing. Standard fish habitat variables were recorded, as well as riparian vegetation features, water quality and discharge. Samples of both terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates were collected. Ten native species of fish (including four salmonids) were present in these habitats and were differentially distributed in response to drainage features. Although few to no fish were found in drainages directly feeding into the river's main-stem, fish numbers decreased as distance from the main-stem increased. During this study, fish abundance or community composition were not associated with riparian vegetation or water quality. Fish response to food availability and abundance will be examined during the winter of 2003-04.

Last Modified: 7/31/2014