Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ichthyology Class Trip To The Flint River Today

Today's lab exercise for my Ichthyology class was taking the class out to the Flint River at Oscar Patterson Road, NE of town. Last time I was there in March the water was high and fast, just low enough so we could do some seining and castnetting. Today, no problem; a few deep holes but nothing life-threatening. Eight students made the trip, some of them below just after we arrived.

We found a more interesting range of fish than I would have guessed. We netted one Silver Shiner, always a good sign. The surprising part was that we found 2, maybe 3, species of Cyprinella--Whitetails (galactura), Spotfin (spiloptera), and maybe Steelcolor (whipplei). I have to look at the ones we kept sometime tomorrow and see if some of them really are Steelcolor. All three are in the Flint, I'd just never encountered three Cyprinella species in one small stretch of the Flint. Below is a picture of the river stretch we found the fish, primarily under or just downstream of the bridge in flowing, knee-deep water over exposed flint bedrock and some sand and cobble.


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