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Distributions of Lake Fish in the Northeast: II. The Minnows (Cyprinidae)

TitleDistributions of Lake Fish in the Northeast: II. The Minnows (Cyprinidae)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2000
AuthorsWhittier, TR, Halliwell, DB, Daniels, RA
JournalNortheastern Naturalist
Keywordsdistribution, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program, lakes, minnow Cyprinidae, native status, northeastern USA

We discuss the distribution and native status of 24 minnow species (family: Cyprinidae) collected at 203 randomly selected lakes in the northeastern USA (New England, New York, New Jersey) by the Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP). Twenty-four species were collected during the summers of 1991–96. Only golden shiner was frequently collected, occurring in 71% of the sampled lakes. Fallfish, creek chub, and common shiner were also common. The remaining species were taken in <10% of the lakes. Physical (surface area, depth, elevation), chemical (pH, total phosphorus), and watershed disturbance characteristics of the lakes show distinct species-specific patterns. Evidence suggests that native minnow biodiversity has declined over the last 150 years as a result of changing biotic, physical, chemical, and watershed characteristics.