Re: NANFA-- Darters and Sculpins

Brian Haas (
Mon, 05 Aug 2002 21:22:57 -0500

Hi Jon -

As an amateur myself, here's what I have to offer in the way of advice:

For identifying specimens, get a copy of the Peterson _Field Guide to
Freshwater Fishes_ by Page and Burr. To make the task of identifying
individuals easier, first go through all the range maps and write down the
names of the species that _should_ be in your area. That way you'll have
fewer species to compare your live fish with.

In gathering information on life histories, lay in the stream for hours on
end with a snorkel and just watch. Take detailed notes after observation,
and take measurements if possible (e.g., temp., weather, water depth and
clarity). Observations could also be made from shore, depending upon the
situation and species. Also, buy a book on fishwatching.

When hoping to observe reproductive habits, spring is generally the best
time, though fish have interesting habits the rest of the year as well.

Travis Haas
Hazel Green, WI

At 07:21 PM 8/5/02 -0400, you wrote:
>Hello all,
> One more question for you guys from a "newbie". I was wondering what
is the best way for one or two people to identify and\or gather information
on darters and sculpins and other fish in their native habitat? I happen
to have their habitat in my backyard, so I have plenty of time to observe,
but I still need a way to discern what species is what and I need to know
how to go about gathering info on their reproductive habits. My main
objective is to find out as much as humanly possible about these Pygmy
Sculpins I have grown so fond of. Thanks in advance for any weblinks
and info you may have.
> Jon Hanson
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