Ichthyology research at MMNS focuses primarily on the status,
general ecology and taxonomy 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. 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 often integrated within the MMNS Ichthyology
Contact Matt Roberts
Examples of past and current research topics:
- Movement and habitat use of sub-adult and adult gulf
sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrhinchus desotoi) in the
- Distribution and abundance of the pearl darter (Percina
aurora) in the Pascagoula River drainage.
- The occurrence of tilapia and the potential interaction
with gamefishes in Mississippi's coastal waters (co-PI with M.
- Habitat affinities and movement of juvenile Gulf sturgeon
in coastal Mississippi (co-PI with M. Peterson).
- Taxonomic assessment of Fundulus sp.
(cf. F. olivaceus), a possible Mississippi
endemic (co-PI with M. Dugo, B. Kreiser).
- Morphometric and meristic variation in Notropis
sabinae with an emphasis on Mississippi populations
in the Big Black River system.
- Survey for Percina aurora (Pearl darter) in
the Pearl River system.
- Molecular analysis of the Pearl darter (Percina
aurora) and potential surrogate darter species for
assessment of propagation program (co-PI with M. Dugo).
- Assessing effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on populations
of non-indigenous Nile tilapia in southern Mississippi (co-PI
with M. Peterson, P. Schofield).
- Molecular systematics, phylogeography and population genetics
of Fundulus dispar and Fundulus
blairae (co-PI with M. Dugo).
- Update on distribution and population aspects of
Noturus gladiator and Percina
phoxocephala in Mississippi.
- Floodplains and utilization by fishes: Pearl River
swamps/sloughs in the Jackson-Metro area.
Regional Biological Collections
- The Inland Fishes of Mississippi. 2001. S.T. Ross. University
Press of Mississippi.
- Sharks, skates and rays of the Gulf of Mexico: a field guide.
2006. G.R. Parsons. University Press of Mississippi.
- A field guide to freshwater fishes of North America north
of Mexico. 1991. L.M. Page and B.M.
Burr. Houghton Mifflin Company.
- Fishes of Alabama and the Mobile basin. 1996. M.F. Mettee,
P.E. O'Neil and J.M. Pierson. Oxmoor House.
- Fishes of Alabama. 2004. H.T. Boschung, Jr. and R.L. Mayden.
- Fishes of Arkansas. 1984. H.W. Robison and T.M.
Buchanan. The University of Arkansas Press.
- Freshwater fishes of Louisiana. 1974. N.H. Douglas.
Claitor's Publishing Division.
- The fishes of Missouri. 1997. W.L. Plieger. Missouri Department
of Conservation, revised edition.
- The fishes of Tennessee. 1993. D.A. Etnier and W.C. Starnes.
The University of Tennessee Press.
- Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico, Texas, Louisiana and adjacent
waters. 1998. H.D. Hoese and R.H. Moore. Texas A&M
University Press, 2nd edition.