By James C. Petersen and B.G. Justus
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An inventory of fishes of Wilson's Creek National Battlefield
was conducted at eight sites on three streams, two springs, a pond, and within a cave. Fish were sampled using conventional
electrofishing equipment during July 2003. Approximately
325 fish were collected and identified from five of the eight sampling sites. A total of 30 species of fish was collected from the eight sampling sites. The number of species collected at the sampling sites ranged from 0 to 23. Many of the "most commonly" collected fish species are typical of Ozark streams.
A preliminary expected species list incorrectly listed 12 species because of incorrect species range or habitat requirements. A thirteenth species (the Ozark cavefish, Amblyopsis rosae) is listed as "unexpected." However, this designation is uncertain because Ozark cavefish have been reported from several caves and springs in Greene County. Upon revising the list of expected species, the inventory yielded 30 of the 53 species (57 percent).
Ten of the 30 fish species collected in this inventory previously had not been collected at Wilson's Creek National Battlefield. However, eight species collected in one or more of the two previous inventories were not collected in this effort. It is unknown if any change in environmental conditions has occurred that is responsible for the absence of these species.
Although none of the species collected in this study are federally-listed threatened or endangered species, five species collected at Wilson's Creek National Battlefield may be of special interest to National Park Service managers and others because they are endemic to the Ozark Plateaus. The duskystripe shiner (Luxilus pilsbryi), Ozark bass (Ambloplites constellatus), Ozark chub (Erimystax harryi), and stippled darter (Etheostoma punctulatum) are common and found throughout much of the Ozark Plateaus. However, the Ozark sculpin (Cottus hypselurus) has a more limited range and more specific habitat requirements.
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