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Science

Fishes

MMNS Ichthyology Research

Ichthyology research at MMNS focuses primarily on the status and general ecology of the fishes found within Mississippi. Information on these basic elements provides the necessary framework to direct conservation strategies and assist with management decisions.

Much of our research is directed towards baseline sampling and general survey work. Target specific research projects are often dictated from the results of previous baseline studies, which note the need for additional information on the species or a lack of recent data for a species of greatest conservation need.

Research activities are conducted by MMNS Staff or guided collaboratively with personnel from other state and federal agencies. Material stemming from MMNS based-research is integrated within the MMNS Ichthyology Collection.

Current/Recent Research

  • 2021:Range Gap Survey for the Peal Darter, Percina aurora, in the Chickasawhay River system
  • 2021: Assessing Saltmarsh Topminnow, Fundulus jenkinsi, populations along coastal Mississippi utilizing boat electrofishing
  • 2020: Status and distribution of the Bandfin Darter, Etheostoma zonistium, in Northern Mississippi
  • 2020: Status and distribution of the Ironcolor Shiner, Notropis chalybaeus, in Coastal Mississippi
  • 2019: Assessing the Utility of Benthic Trawls for Collecting Pearl Darter, Percina aurora
  • 2019: Status and distribution of the Frecklebelly Madtom, Noturus munitus, in the Tombigbee River drainage in Mississippi
  • 2018: Status and distribution of the Frecklebelly Madtom, Noturus munitus, in the Pearl River drainage in Mississippi
  • 2018: Status and distribution of the Piebald Madtom, Noturus gladiator, in Mississippi

Recent Publications or Technical Reports

1. Ellwanger RJ, Rezac CR, and BH Chaffins. 2021. AN ASSESSMENT OF SALTMARSH TOPMINNOW STATUS ACROSS THE MISSISSIPPI COAST UTILIZING BOAT ELECTROFISHING. MMNS Technical Report 217. Funded by USFWS, Section 6.

2. Ellwanger RJ, Rezac CR, and BH Chaffins. 2021. RANGE GAP SURVEY FOR PEARL DARTER (PERCINA AURORA) IN THE CHICKASAWHAY RIVER SYSTEM IN MISSISSIPPI. MMNS Technical Report 215. Funded by USFWS, Section 6.

3. Wagner MD, Ellwanger RJ, Hurst IN, and MJ Ziegelbauer. 2020. STATUS SURVEY FOR NOTROPIS CHALYBAEUS IN COASTAL MISSISSIPPI. MMNS Technical Report 213. Funded by USFWS, State Wildlife Grant.

4. Wagner MD, Schumann DA, Smith BJ. 2019. Gear effectiveness and size selectivity for five cryptic madtom species (Noturus spp.). Journal of Applied Ichthyology 2019; 00:1–10. https://doi.org/10.1111/jai.13892

5. Wagner MD, Daun N, Hood N, Tomlin W, Duplessis M. 2018. Status survey for Frecklebelly Madtom (Noturus munitus) in the Pearl River drainage. MMNS Technical Report 201. Funded by USFWS, State Wildlife Grant.

6. Wagner MD, Schumann DA. 2017. Piebald Madtom Status Survey and Evaluation of Multiple Gears for Piebald Madtom (Noturus gladiator). MMNS Technical Report 193. Funded by USFWS, Section 6.

7. Wagner MD, Clark SR, Schaefer JF, Piller KR. 2017. Status survey for the Pearl darter in the state of Mississippi. MMNS Technical Report 192. Funded by USFWS, Section 6.

Contact:  Robert Ellwanger at Robert.ellwanger@mmns.ms.gov

Electrofishing along coast of Mississippi

Paddlefish caught on the Pearl River above Jackson, MS

Sampling for Pearl Darter on the Chunky River, MS

Spawning Rough Shiners

MDWFP Biologists sampling the Big Black River 2021

Collaborative backpack electrofishing sampling for Frecklebelly Madtom (Noturus munitus) in the Pearl River with Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks.

Frecklebelly Madtom (Noturus munitus) collected from the Strong River.

Pearl Darter (Percina aurora) collected while trawling the Pascagoula River.

Piebald Madtom (Noturus gladiator) collected from the Coldwater River.

Ironcolor Shiner (Notropis chalybaeus) from the Escatawpa River.

 

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