Statement of Problem:
This research is a multiyear sampling of benthic fishes of the missouri river directed at understanding the effects of river management on the missouri river ecosystem that was initiated by the flood of 1993. In 1995, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation initiated a benthic fishes study in the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers through the USGS. This study is to provide essential information on population structure and habitat use of 26 important recreational, at risk, and keystone benthic fish species along the main stem Missouri and lower Yellowstone Rivers.
Field data collection covers the missouri river from above Fort Peck Reservoir in Montana to the mouth, including riverine segments between Lake Oahe and Lake Sakakawea in North Dakota and the Yellowstone River. The USGS Cooperative Research Units and Montana Fish, Game and Parks are conducting the field research. CERC researchers are involved in the sampling design, study development, systemic analysis, statistical methods selection, statistical
(1) describe and evaluate recruitment, growth, size structure, body condition, and relative abundance of selected benthic fishes
(2) measure physical (e.g., velocity) and water quality (e.g., turbidity) features in dominant habitats where fishes are collected
(3) describe the use of dominant habitats by benthic fishes.