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Description: The upper Gila River in New Mexico is one of the few unobstructed rivers in the Colorado River Basin with largely intact native fish populations, including four federally listed and one state listed species.Freshwater systems throughout the West continue to be threatened by human encroachment and water development. Methodologies or decision support tools to evaluate resource management practices that foster an understanding of how fish species adapt to the effects of climate change are critical to future resource management planning.
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Freshwater systems are critically imperiled and continue to be threatened by human encroachment and water development. The upper Gila River in New Mexico is one of the last unobstructed rivers in the Colorado River basin with a mostly intact native fish fauna, including two federally listed and one state-listed fish species. Kansas State University will develop methodologies or decision support tools to assess or evaluate current or existing resource management practices to learn and adapt to the effects of climate change on fish species. The researchers will investigate how the connectivity of the Gila River habitat impacts the fish population with respect to the behavior of native and non-native species.
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Executive Summary: Our project combined field surveys of fish communities and habitat characteristics with estimates of population genetic structure to identify and evaluate critical factors influencing fish communities in the Gila River basin of New Mexico. Fish communities were structured along a strong habitat gradient associated with stream size, with distinct differences in the distribution of native and nonnative fishes. Nonnative warm-water species generally occurred in mainstem habitats, whereas coldwater nonnative salmonids occurred in high elevation tributaries. Habitat affinities of native species varied, with some occurring in mainstem habitats and others in tributaries. Several native species, such...


    map background search result map search result map Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes Final Report: Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes Science Brief for Resource Managers: Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes Final Report: Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes Science Brief for Resource Managers: Metacommunity Dynamics of Gila River Fishes