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The Role of Riparian Vegetation and Instream Habitat on Fish Communities in Intermediate-Sized Arizona Rivers

Duration

June 2016 - December 2018

Narrative

The native fish populations of the southwest United States are highly endangered and drastically declining due to multiple anthropogenic stressors. Physical habitat has been defined through habitat suitability criteria (HSC) for these vulnerable populations yet has been primarily limited to depth, flow, and substrate. The relationship between riparian vegetation and instream habitat on fish communities in the arid southwest United States is uncertain. The relationship needs to be assessed in order to implement management practices to conserve fish populations of interest. Four streams within central Arizona (Verde River, Blue River, San Francisco River, Tonto Creek) have been selected based on high priority. Prepositioned areal electrofishing devices (PAEDs) will be used to sample fishes in randomly selected sites within each stream. Overhead canopy will be measured using hemispherical photography within each site. Other aspects of the riparian vegetation such as length, width, and percent type with be assessed using ArcGIS. Relationships examined will include various components of the riparian community with common native and nonnative fish species presence, and components of the riparian community with stream channel mesohabitat type (e.g., pool, run, riffle). Field work on this project will commence spring, 2017.

 

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 2

Masters Students: 9

Phd Students: 1

Post Docs: 1

University Staff: 43

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 25

Scientific Publications: 57

Presentations: 95

 

Personnel

Funding Agencies

  • USGS

Links

Arizona Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Cooperators

  1. Arizona Game Fish Department
  2. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  3. U.S. Geological Survey
  4. University of Arizona
  5. Wildlife Management Institute