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Knoxville, TN, United States

Hagler M.M.,University of Georgia | Freeman M.C.,U.S. Geological Survey | Wenger S.J.,Rocky Research | Freeman B.J.,University of Georgia | And 2 more authors.
Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences | Year: 2011

Rarely encountered animals may be present but undetected, potentially leading to incorrect assumptions about the persistence of a local population or the conservation priority of a particular area. The federally endangered and narrowly endemic Conasauga logperch (Percina jenkinsi) is a good example of a rarely encountered fish species of conservation concern, for which basic population statistics are lacking. We evaluated the occurrence frequency for this species using surveys conducted with a repeat-observation sampling approach during the summer of 2008. We also analyzed museum records since the late 1980s to evaluate the trends in detected status through time. The results of these analyses provided support for a declining trend in this species over a portion of its historical range, despite low estimated detection probability. We used the results to identify the expected information return for a given level of monitoring where the sampling approach incorporates incomplete detection. The method applied here may be of value where historic occurrence records are available, provided that the assumption of constant capture efficiency is reasonable. Source


Ruble C.L.,Conservation Fisheries Inc. | Rakes P.L.,Conservation Fisheries Inc. | Shute J.R.,Conservation Fisheries Inc. | Welsh S.A.,U.S. Geological Survey
Southeastern Naturalist | Year: 2016

Reproductive biology and early life-history data are important for understanding the ecology of fishes. In 2008, we conducted captive propagation studies on 3 species of darters of the subgenus Nothonotus: Etheostoma wapiti (Boulder Darter), E. vulneratum (Wounded Darter), and E. maculatum (Spotted Darter). The length of spawning period and associated range of water temperatures for the Wounded Darter exceeded that of the Spotted Darter and Boulder Darter. The mean number of eggs produced per female was lowest for Boulder Darter and highest in the Wounded Darter. The Boulder Darter had the highest percent of eggs hatched, the lowest percent larval to juvenile stage survivorship, and the lowest mean number of juveniles produced per female. Egg diameters at deposition and prior to hatch were smallest for the Spotted Darter. If reproductive biology and early lifehistory information from captive fishes represent that of wild populations, then the data obtained during this study are relevant to development and implementation of conservation and management plans for these closely related darter species. Source


Douglas M.,University of Tennessee at Knoxville | Keck B.P.,University of Tennessee at Knoxville | Ruble C.,Conservation Fisheries Inc. | Petty M.,Conservation Fisheries Inc. | And 3 more authors.
Biology Letters | Year: 2013

Pelagic larval duration (PLD) can influence evolutionary processes ranging from dispersal to extinction in aquatic organisms. Using estimates of PLD obtained from species of North American darters (Percidae: Etheostomatinae), we demonstrate that this freshwater fish clade exhibits surprising variation in PLD. Comparative analyses provide some evidence that higher stream gradients favour the evolution of shorter PLD. Additionally, similar to patterns in the marine fossil record in which lower PLD is associated with greater extinction probability, we found a reduced PLD in darter lineages was evolutionarily associated with extinction risk. Understanding the causes and consequences of PLD length could lead to better management and conservation of organisms in our increasingly imperiled aquatic environments. © 2013 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved. Source

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