Distribution of larval fishes in the Winfield Pool, Kanawha River, and direct impacts of commercial navigation traffic on larval fish survival

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Virginia Tech


Distributions of larval fishes in the Winfield Pool, Kanawha River, West Virginia, were determined by sampling two sites with bongo and push nets. Cyprinids, clupeids, and Aplodinotus grunniens dominated collections. Main channel densities were a fraction of the densities along the shoreline, indicating the importance of the shoreline as a nursery. Diel trends in abundance were evident for several taxa, but were likely caused by diel changes in gear avoidance and distribution of larvae. Vertical trends in abundance were apparent for several taxa at the deeper and more lentic sampling site (lower pool). Aplodinotus grunniens were generally more abundant near the bottom, especially during daylight. Cyprinids were more abundant near the bottom in mid-June, but displayed no vertical trends on other sampling dates. Clupeids were more abundant at middepth or surface during daylight, while equally dispersed or near the bottom at night. Vertical trends were not evident at the shallower and more lotic site (upper pool) except for Aplodinotus grunniens, which displayed the same preference for the bottom, as at the lower site.