Re: NANFA-- Paint Rock, AL, trip (long)

George Arndt (georgeacim_at_hotmail.com)
Mon, 28 May 2001 21:46:25 -0400

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WOW now this was a trip. we still have NOT had a single trip here in new
england. we were promised a collection trip for April. then when we did
not get it we were promised a trip in may. well there is NOTHING lined up
for may and it is the end of the month. there is NOTHING lined up for JUNE
either. I think nanfa is DEAD IN NEW ENGLAND.

we had talk talk talk meetings in january february and march. all the talk
about collecting. all the promises. I know what it must be like to be a
little kid and father keeps promising everything and never comes through. i
have heard how it really can mess up kids. i feel it NOW.

I was raised to hold true to my word. if there is to be NO collection in
april then say so. and if none in may then say so. dont lie to me. dont
promise me and then crash me. i dont like this abuse and i dont need the
abuse.

oops sorry for expressing my true feelings.

George Arndt

>From: "Bruce Stallsmith" <fundulus_at_hotmail.com>
>Reply-To: nanfa_at_aquaria.net
>To: nanfa_at_aquaria.net
>Subject: NANFA-- Paint Rock, AL, trip (long)
>Date: Mon, 28 May 2001 20:50:01 -0400
>
>We lucked out on Saturday for a trip mostly to the Paint Rock Valley in
>Jackson County, AL. The weather was clear and about 78 F. Six people
>started
>out on the trip, and by the next day (!) only two continued. Our primary
>destination was the Estill Fork of the Paint Rock River, and we found 33
>species at this site. It's an old ford that is now crossed by a low
>concrete
>bridge that lets water flow through underneath in pipes; a broad stream
>above is concentrated in a pool about 4 feet deep below the bridge, and
>then
>a riffle system begins. Our only contact with local people was when a guy
>stopped his truck on the bridge and told us that this stream is really good
>for baptisms, were we interested? I told him that flowing water is holy, he
>agreed, and drove off.
>(The species lists were compiled by Dave Neely, I'm attempting to edit this
>all together.)
>
>Estill Fork at County Road 140, Jackson Co, AL. 26 May 2001
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox, Bruce Stallsmith, Steven Ellis, Nick Sharp, Vitaly
>from Birmingham. Mostly snorkelling, some collecting with seine and dip
>net.
>Notes: Beautiful gravel, lush water willow beds, crystal clear water at 65
>F, pH 7.6 and TDS 160 ppm.
>Species observed: longnose gar, largescale stoneroller, streamline chub,
>bigeye chub, striped shiner, scarletfin shiner, mountain shiner, palezone
>shiner (federally endangered, all released immediately!), bigeye shiner,
>Tennessee shiner, telescope shiner, sawfin shiner, bluntnose minnow,
>northern hogsucker, shorthead redhorse, black or golden redhorse,
>mosquitofish, northern studfish,
>blackspotted topminnow, banded sculpin, rock bass, bluegill, longear
>sunfish, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, rainbow darter, fantail darter,
>stripetail darter, redline darter, Tennessee snubnose darter, greenside
>darter, blueside darter, blotchside logperch.
>
>Driving out from Estill Fork and down the Paint Rock valley, four of us
>were
>caravaning down the main road. As we passed out of the small town of
>Princeton we noticed a small cinderblock springhouse on the right, built
>into the base of a worn limestone clif face. A spring run passed under the
>road and along the edge of a cow pasture. We stopped, asked permission to
>poke around, and kick-seined the pasture and investigated the spring as it
>came out of the cliff. The darters we found were in brilliant breeding
>coloration, the most vivid Tennessee snubnoses I've ever seen. Casper took
>them back to the farm house in a Glad bag and showed them to the family.
>They were visibly startled and impressed. As we packed up our gear across
>the road from the spring run, the cows came down, stared at us, and
>proceeded to drink water.
>Beason Spring on AL Hwy 65, Princeton, Jackson Co., AL
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox, Bruce Stallsmith, Steven Ellis.
>Notes: abundant watercress, in cow pasture. Collected with seine only.
>Species observed: striped shiner, sawfin shiner, blacknose dace, banded
>sculpin, mosquitofish, rainbow darter, Tennessee
>snubnose darter, hybrid green x bluegill sunfish
>
>Next we went to another striking spring, also at the base of an even higher
>limestone cliff face. Blue Spring is circular, about 50 feet across,
>probably 6+ feet deep in the middle and has a spring run. The water even
>made Casper complain about how cold it was! The Johnny darters were an
>interesting find; they have a disjunct distribution in the Paint Rock
>valley, and far to the southwest below the fall line they're common. They
>were the first I've seen.
>Blue Spring on County Road 20, Jackson Co., AL
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox, Bruce Stallsmith, Steven Ellis.
>Notes: bluish water, very cold. No vegetation. Collected with seine only.
>Species observed: striped shiner, blacknose dace, mottled sculpin, banded
>sculpin, bluegill, rainbow darter, stripetail darter, johnny darter,
>Tennessee snubnose darter, blueside darter, greenside darter.
>
>This was the end of the trip for myself and Steven Ellis. Casper and Dave
>crashed somewhere along the western edge of Jackson County and continued
>yesterday:
>
>Selby Spring off of Co Rd 145, Jackson Co., AL. 27 May 2001.
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox.
>Notes: beautiful cliff faces and small cave. Collected with dip net only.
>Species observed: blacknose dace, banded sculpin.
>
>Isbell Spring, Jackson Co., AL.
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox.
>Notes: Nice cave system with knee-deep water at entrance. Collected with
>seine, dip net.
>Species observed: banded sculpin, bluegill.
>
>Flint River at Winchester Rd near Bell Factory, Madison Co., AL
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox.
>Notes: slightly turbid- visibility about 2 ft. Didnít stay longÖ
>snorkeling
>only.
>Species observed: largescale stoneroller, striped shiner, northern
>hogsucker, rainbow darter, Tennessee snubnose darter, dusky darter.
>
>This site is one of my personal faves that I often visit with just a
>dipnet.
>Using a seine increases the species count dramatically. I've also found
>greenside darters and stripetail darters at this site.
>Mountain Fork at Old Mountain Fork Rd, Madison Co., AL.
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox.
>Notes: Large spring ca. 2 mi. upstream. Abundant vegetation, including
>lots
>of parrotfeather, riverweed, pondweed, others.
>Water clear and cold. Snorkelling, seine.
>Species observed: largescale stoneroller, striped shiner, scarletfin
>shiner, flame chub, bluntnose minnow, white sucker,
>northern hogsucker, black or golden redhorse, mosquitofish, banded sculpin,
>rock bass, bluegill, green sunfish, longear
>sunfish, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, rainbow darter, blackfin darter,
>Tennessee snubnose darter.
>
>The following is a very public site that I've never collected, The cool
>find
>here was a large flame chub population.
>Mountain Fork at Winchester Rd in New Market, Madison Co., AL.
>Dave Neely, Casper Cox.
>Notes: immediately below small dam. Water clear, nice gravel riffles at
>site. Some silt, lots of very slippery bedrock.
>Species observed: largescale stoneroller, striped shiner, scarletfin
>shiner, flame chub (abundant!), bluntnose minnow, white sucker, northern
>hogsucker, mosquitofish, banded sculpin, rock bass, bluegill, largemouth
>bass, rainbow darter, blackfin darter, Tennessee snubnose darter.
>------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>The big news of all of this is the sheer fish diversity in the Tennessee
>valley. We found more species of freshwater fishes in the corners of two
>counties than can be found in many states. The Tennessee Valley
>super-region
>hopes to get out in the field again in about a month. Tentatively the next
>trip will be hosted by Dave Neely in the greater Tuscaloosa area, maybe
>along the forks of the Warrior River.
>
>--Bruce Stallsmith
>Huntsville, AL
>
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/ nanfa_at_aquaria.net. To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get help, send the word
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/ For more information about NANFA, visit our web page, http://www.nanfa.org
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