Niagara Power Project FERC No. 2216

 

GILL CREEK FISH SURVEY 2004

 

HTML Format.  Text only

 

Prepared for: New York Power Authority 

Prepared by: Gomez and Sullivan Enigeers, P.C. and New York Power Authority

 

August 2005

 

Copyright © 2005 New York Power Authority

 

___________________________________________________

 

ABBREVIATIONS

Agencies

NYPA              New York Power Authority

Units of Measure

°C                    degrees Celsius, degrees Centigrade

mg/L                milligrams per liter

mm                   millimeter

μs/cm               microsiemens per centimeter

Environmental

SAV                 submerged aquatic vegetation

Miscellaneous

NPP                 Niagara Power Project

RTE                 Rare, Threatened, and Endangered

SOC                 species of concern

 

1.0     INTRODUCTION

The New York Power Authority (NYPA) is engaged in the relicensing of the Niagara Power Project (NPP) in Lewiston, Niagara County, New York.  The present operating license of the plant expires in August 2007.  As part of its preparation for the relicensing of the Niagara Power Project, NYPA is developing information related to the ecological, engineering, recreational, cultural, and socioeconomic aspects of the Project.

One of the studies NYPA agreed to conduct as part of the relicensing process, at the request of the Tuscarora Environment Program, was a fish survey of Gill Creek. The purposes of the study were to provide a better description of the distribution and composition of fish species in Gill Creek during spring, summer, and fall, and a general characterization of aquatic habitat in the creek at the locations where fish were sampled.

 

2.0     METHODS

2.1         Investigation Area

The investigation area was the portion of Gill Creek extending from Buffalo Avenue to approximately 2,500 feet upstream of Garlow Road on Tuscarora Land, excluding Hyde Park Lake and tributaries of Gill Creek (Figure 2.1-1).

2.2         Fish Sampling and Handling

Fish sampling was done in Gill Creek on May 19-20, July 12, and September 22, 2004 by seining, electrofishing, or a combination of both.

Captured fish were identified and enumerated in accordance with Standard Operating Procedures (Appendix A) by Dennis Dunning, Jason George, Mike Krumrine, Alex Levy, and John Magee.  The total length of captured largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, yellow perch and fish belonging to the pike family was also recorded.

2.3         Habitat Descriptions

Habitat descriptions were assigned using the method and descriptions of Arend (1999), Chapter 8.  Aquatic habitats were generally characterized as one of the following habitat types:

Riffle: shallow reach with moderate turbulence, moderate water velocities, and a slope < 4%. Riffles are generally characterized by the occurrence of small ripples, waves, and eddies, which are caused by small hydraulic jumps over rough bed material;

Run: moderately shallow reach with non-turbulent water, no major flow obstructions and little to no surface agitation;

Pool: aquatic habitat with a gradient less than 1 % that is generally deeper and wider than the habitat directly upstream and downstream;

Glide: wide channel lacking a definite thalweg with non-turbulent low to moderate water velocities.  A glide usually occurs at the transition between a pool and a riffle.

Water depths were approximated for each site and the presence of aquatic vegetation was also noted when observed.

2.4         Water Quality Sampling

Water temperature and dissolved oxygen were measured, using a YSI 55 meter, and recorded at each sampling location on May 19-20, July 12, and September 22.  Conductivity was measured using a Corning CD-55 conductivity meter, and recorded during July and September.  A qualitative description of water clarity was also noted at each sampling site.

2.5         Data Recording

Data recording was done using a pen computer directly into an integrated Geographical Information System (GIS).  Orthophotos with a one-foot spatial resolution from the year 2002 were loaded into the pen computer along with a data dictionary before commencing field activities.  Sampling sites were mapped by locating the site on the orthophotos and drawing a line along the representative portion of the creek.  At each site, information was recorded on the environmental conditions (e.g., weather, water temperature, dissolved oxygen concentration, and conductivity), the sampling equipment used and specifications/settings (e.g., size of seines, and electrofisher voltage, frequency, duty cycle and effort), the number of fish captured per species, the number of fish observed, and the number of fish preserved for later identification.  

 

Figure 2.1-1

Investigation Area and Fish Survey Sites

 

3.0     RESULTS

The gear used and descriptions of the habitat characteristics at each site are listed in Table 3.0-1.  The taxa of fish caught in Gill Creek are listed alphabetically by common name in Table 3.0-2 and phylogenetically by scientific name in Table 3.0-3.  The numbers of fish caught are listed by species, month, method of capture, and site number in Table 3.0-4 through Table 3.0-19.  Total lengths (mm) of measured fish are presented by month, method of capture, and site number in Table 3.0-20 through Table 3.0-25.

Water quality data are presented in Appendix B.

 

 

Table 3.0-1

Gear Used and General Habitat Characteristics by Site in Gill Creek During 2004

Site #

Gear

General Aquatic Habitat Characteristics

1

Blocking seine

Shallow (<1 ft), low gradient riffle

1

Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine

Shallow (<1 ft), low gradient riffle

2

50-foot seine haul

Shallow (<2 ft), lentic area

3

Blocking seine

1-3 ft deep, pool and short, low gradient riffle

3

Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine

1-3 ft deep, pool and short, low gradient riffle

4

50-foot seine haul

3 ft deep pool

5

Electrofishing

1-3 ft deep pool

6

20-foot seine haul

<1 ft deep, in open box culvert on Hyde Park Golf Course

71

Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine

1-3 ft deep run and pool

71

Blocking seine

1-3 ft deep pool

71

Electrofishing

1-3 ft deep run and pool and <1 ft deep low gradient riffle

8

Blocking seine

1-2 ft deep glide and run

8

Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine

1-2 ft deep glide and run

9

Electrofishing

1-2 ft deep glide and run

10

Electrofishing

1 ft deep run and <1 ft deep low gradient riffle

11

20-foot seine haul

1-2 ft deep glide

11

Electrofishing

1-2 ft deep run and low gradient riffle

12

Electrofishing

1-3 ft deep run and glide

13

Electrofishing

1-3 ft deep glide

14

Blocking seine

1-3 ft deep pool

14

Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine

1-3 ft deep pool

15

Electrofishing

1 ft deep run

16

20-foot seine haul

1-2 ft deep pool

16

Electrofishing

1-2 ft deep pool with submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and small woody debris

1 Dense SAV precluded sampling with a seine or blocking net in September.  Only electrofishing was conducted in September.

 

Table 3.0-2

Common and scientific Names of Fishes Caught in Gill Creek by Seining and Electrofishing During May, July, and September 2004 listed Alphabetically by Common Name

Common Name

Scientific Name

Alewife

Alosa pseudoharengus

Banded killifish

Fundulus diaphanus

Black crappie

Pomoxis nigromaculatus

Blacknose dace

Rhinichthys atratulus

Bluegill

Lepomis macrochirus

Bluntnose minnow

Pimephales notatus

Brook stickleback

Culaea inconstans

Brown bullhead

Ameiurus nebulosus

Carp

Cyprinus carpio

Central mudminnow

Umbra limi

Central stoneroller

Campostoma anomalum

Common shiner

Luxilus cornutus

Creek chub

Semotilus atromaculatus

Creek chub/fallfish

Semotilus sp.

Emerald shiner

Notropis atherinoides

Fathead minnow

Pimephales promelas

Golden shiner

Notemigonus crysoleucas

Green sunfish

Lepomis cyanellus

Largemouth bass

Micropterus salmoides

Logperch

Percina caprodes

Minnow sp.

Cyprinidae

Mottled sculpin

Cottus bairdi

Pumpkinseed

Lepomis gibbosus

Rainbow darter

Etheostoma caeruleum

Rock bass

Ambloplites rupestris

Round goby

Neogobius melanostomus

Sculpin

Cottus sp.

Smallmouth bass

Micropterus dolomieui

Spotfin shiner

Cyprinella spiloptera

Spottail shiner

Notropis hudsonius

Suckers

Catostomus sp.

Sunfish

Lepomis sp.

Tadpole madtom

Notorus gyrinus

White crappie

Pomoxis annularis

White perch

Morone americana

White sucker

Catostomus commersoni

Yellow bullhead

Ameiurus natalis

 

Table 3.0-3

Common and Scientific Names of Fishes Captured in Gill Creek by Seining and Electrofishing During May, July, and September 2004 Listed Phylogenetically1 by Order and Family

Order

Family

Species

Scientific Name

Common Name

Clupeiformes 

Clupeidae

Alosa pseudoharengus

Alewife

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Campostoma anomalum

Central stoneroller

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Cyprinella spiloptera

Spotfin shiner

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Cyprinidae

Minnow

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Cyprinus carpio

Carp

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Luxilus cornutus

Common shiner

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Notemigonus crysoleucas

Golden shiner

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Notropis atherinoides

Emerald shiner

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Notropis hudsonius

Spottail shiner

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Pimephales notatus

Bluntnose minnow

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Pimephales promelas

Fathead minnow

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Rhinichthys atratulus

Blacknose dace

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Semotilus atromaculatus

Creek chub

Cypriniformes

Cyprinidae

Semotilus sp.

Creek chub/fallfish

Cypriniformes

Catostomidae

Catostomus sp.

Sucker

Cypriniformes

Catostomidae

Catostomus commersoni

White sucker

Siluriformes

Ictaluridae

Ameiurus natalis

Yellow bullhead

Siluriformes

Ictaluridae

Ameiurus nebulosus

Brown bullhead

Siluriformes

Ictaluridae

Notorus gyrinus

Tadpole madtom

Salmoniformes

Umbridae

Umbra limi

Central mudminnow

Atheriniformes

Cyprinodontidae

Fundulus diaphanus

Banded killifish

Gasterosteiformes

Gasterosteidae

Culaea inconstans

Brook stickleback

Scorpaeniformes 

Cottidae

Cottus bairdi

Mottled sculpin

Scorpaeniformes 

Cottidae

Cottus sp.

Sculpin

Perciformes

Percichthyidae

Morone americana

White perch

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Ambloplites rupestris

Rock bass

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Lepomis cyanellus

Green sunfish

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Lepomis gibbosus

Pumpkinseed

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Lepomis macrochirus

Bluegill

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Lepomis sp.

Sunfish

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Micropterus dolomieui

Smallmouth bass

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Micropterus salmoides

Largemouth bass

Perciformes

Percidae

Etheostoma caeruleum

Rainbow darter

Perciformes

Percidae

Percina caprodes

Logperch

 

Table 3.0-3 (CONT.)

Common and Scientific Names of Fishes Captured in Gill Creek by Seining and Electrofishing During May, July, and September 2004 Listed Phylogenetically1 by Order and Family

Order

Family

Species

Common Name

Scientific Name

Perciformes

Gobiidae

Neogobius melanostomus

Round goby

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Pomoxis annularis

White crappie

Perciformes

Centrarchidae

Pomoxis nigromaculatus

Black crappie

1Nelson et al. (2004)

 

Table 3.0-4

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 1 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Alewife

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

Bluegill

 

 

4

 

 

 

4

Bluntnose minnow

22

21

18

372

25

3

461

Carp

 

 

1

 

 

 

1

Common shiner

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Emerald shiner

29

 

 

513

7

 

549

Fathead minnow

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Golden shiner

 

 

1

1

1

3

6

Green sunfish

 

 

1

 

 

 

1

Largemouth bass

 

 

5

 

 

5

10

Lepomis sp.

 

 

 

 

1

 

1

Pumpkinseed

1

 

2

 

 

1

4

Rock bass

3

1

 

5

 

 

9

Smallmouth bass

 

 

1

 

 

 

1

Spottail shiner

4

 

1

22

 

 

27

Tadpole madtom

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

White perch

1

 

 

 

 

 

1

White sucker

 

 

 

15

 

 

15

Total

60

23

34

930

34

13

1094

1 Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine.

 

Table 3.0-5

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 2 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Alewife

-

-

-

 

 

37

37

Banded killifish

-

-

-

 

1

 

1

Bluegill

-

-

-

3

5

28

36

Bluntnose minnow

-

-

-

38

1

6

45

Brown bullhead

-

-

-

1

 

 

1

Carp

-

-

-

2

 

 

2

Emerald shiner

-

-

-

65

 

 

65

Golden shiner

-

-

-

8

 

9

17

Green sunfish

-

-

-

 

1

1

2

Largemouth bass

-

-

-

1

1

4

6

Minnows

-

-

-

 

4

 

4

Pumpkinseed

-

-

-

13

36

20

69

Spotfin shiner

-

-

-

 

5

 

5

Spottail shiner

-

-

-

21

 

2

23

Sunfish

-

-

-

7

2

 

9

Tadpole madtom

-

-

-

 

1

1

2

White sucker

-

-

-

34

3

6

43

Total

-

-

-

193

60

114

367

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-6

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 3 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Alewife

 

 

 

 

 

2

2

Banded killifish

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

Black crappie

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

Bluegill

 

 

28

 

 

14

42

Bluntnose minnow

11

11

14

22

48

44

150

Carp

1

 

 

 

 

1

2

Emerald shiner

27

 

 

27

 

 

54

Golden shiner

 

1

3

 

8

6

18

Green sunfish

2

8

2

 

1

2

15

Largemouth bass

 

5

4

 

1

4

14

Pumpkinseed

1

9

10

8

15

4

47

Rock bass

2

1

 

 

 

 

3

Smallmouth bass

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Spottail shiner

 

 

 

2

 

1

3

Sunfish

5

3

 

4

 

 

12

White sucker

 

1

 

1

3

 

5

Total

49

39

61

65

76

80

370

 

Table 3.0-7

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 4 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

-

-

-

2

9

16

27

Bluntnose minnow

-

-

-

1

 

4

5

Carp

-

-

-

 

1

 

1

Fathead minnow

-

-

-

 

1

 

1

Golden shiner

-

-

-

2

 

4

6

Largemouth bass

-

-

-

 

4

 

4

Pumpkinseed

-

-

-

8

12

24

44

Sunfish

-

-

-

3

 

 

3

White crappie

-

-

-

 

9

7

16

White perch

-

-

-

1

22

6

29

White sucker

-

-

-

2

 

2

4

Total

-

-

-

19

58

63

140

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-8

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 5 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

1

 

2

-

-

-

3

Bluntnose minnow

3

1

13

-

-

-

17

Carp

3

 

 

-

-

-

3

Largemouth bass

 

 

1

-

-

-

1

Logperch

 

3

3

-

-

-

6

Pumpkinseed

1

4

3

-

-

-

8

Rainbow darter

 

1

 

-

-

-

1

Rock bass

6

9

10

-

-

-

25

White sucker

2

2

3

-

-

-

7

Yellow bullhead

 

 

1

-

-

-

1

Total

16

20

36

-

-

-

72

1 Seining was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-9

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 6 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

-

-

-

1

 

 

1

Bluntnose minnow

-

-

-

36

 

5

41

Total

-

-

-

37

 

5

42

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site.  No fish were captured during the July seining.

 

Table 3.0-10

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 7 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining2

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

-

1

 

5

10

-

16

Bluntnose minnow

-

2

42

4

3

-

51

Carp

-

1

1

 

 

-

2

Creek chub

-

 

1

 

 

-

1

Golden shiner

-

 

 

5

 

-

5

Largemouth bass

-

 

1

1

 

-

2

Logperch

-

1

3

 

1

-

5

Pumpkinseed

-

1

1

 

12

-

14

Rainbow darter

-

 

2

 

 

-

2

Rock bass

-

4

3

9

15

-

31

White sucker

-

1

 

5

3

-

9

Total

-

11

54

29

44

-

138

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site during May.

2 Seining was not done at this site during September.

 

Table 3.0-11

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 8 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

Bluntnose minnow

24

7

11

113

2

7

164

Central mudminnow

1

 

2

 

 

 

3

Creek chub

32

21

9

21

11

10

104

Creek chub/fallfish1

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Minnows2

 

2

 

 

 

 

2

Pumpkinseed

 

 

1

 

1

 

2

Rock bass

3

1

1

4

1

 

10

Round goby

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

Spottail shiner

 

 

 

 

1

 

1

Suckers3

 

5

 

 

 

 

5

White sucker

9

40

8

13

12

4

86

Total

69

76

32

152

28

23

380

1 Small young of year in the Semotilus genus that could not be identified to species.

2 Small young of year in the minnow family (Cyprinidae) that could not be identified to species.

3 Small young of year in the sucker family (Catostomidae) that could not be identified to species.

 

Table 3.0-12

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 9 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluntnose minnow

7

5

 

-

-

-

12

Creek chub

19

10

5

-

-

-

34

White sucker

1

12

2

-

-

-

15

Total

27

27

7

-

-

-

61

1 Seining was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-13

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 10 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Blacknose dace

 

6

2

-

-

-

8

Bluntnose minnow

1

6

6

-

-

-

13

Creek chub

7

6

18

-

-

-

31

Minnows2

 

5

 

-

-

-

5

Round goby

 

 

2

-

-

-

2

White sucker

1

4

4

-

-

-

9

Total

9

27

32

-

-

-

68

1 Seining was not done at this site.

2 Small young-of-year in the minnow family (Cyprinidae) that could not be identified to species.

 

Table 3.0-14

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 11 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Blacknose dace

 

15

10

1

 

 

26

Bluntnose minnow

9

27

7

13

2

1

59

Brook stickleback

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Central mudminnow

1

 

2

2

 

 

5

Central stoneroller

1

 

 

 

 

 

1

Creek chub

7

4

1

62

9

5

88

Creek chub/fallfish

 

 

 

3

 

 

3

Fathead minnow

 

 

 

1

 

 

1

Mottled sculpin

 

 

3

 

 

 

3

Round goby

 

1

1

1

1

1

5

Sculpin species

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

Unknown2

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

White sucker

 

2

 

3

 

1

6

Total

18

51

24

87

12

8

200

1 Electrofishing was conducted independently and upstream of the 20-foot seine haul.

2 Individual was too small to identify to family level.

 

Table 3.0-15

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 12 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluntnose minnow

 

1

3

-

-

-

4

Brook stickleback

 

1

 

-

-

-

1

Central mudminnow

4

12

7

-

-

-

23

Creek chub

2

6

7

-

-

-

15

Creek chub/fallfish2

1

 

 

-

-

-

1

Mottled sculpin

 

 

1

-

-

-

1

Round goby

4

 

 

-

-

-

4

White sucker

1

2

 

-

-

-

3

Total

12

22

18

-

-

-

52

1 Seining was not done at this site.

2 Small young of year in the Semotilus genus that could not be identified to species.

 

Table 3.0-16

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 13 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Bluegill

1

 

 

-

-

-

1

Central mudminnow

1

2

1

-

-

-

4

Creek chub

6

1

 

-

-

-

7

White sucker

2

1

 

-

-

-

3

Total

10

4

1

-

-

-

15

1 Seining was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-17

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 14 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining

Total

May

July

September

May

July

September

Blacknose dace

 

1

 

 

2

3

6

Bluegill

 

 

14

 

 

30

44

Bluntnose minnow

 

9

2

 

 

8

19

Brook stickleback

9

66

1

19

23

 

118

Brown bullhead

 

2

 

3

4

2

11

Central mudminnow

58

306

16

21

91

2

494

Central stoneroller

 

 

4

 

 

1

5

Creek chub

6

4

70

40

9

238

367

Fathead minnow

15

25

1

121

75

140

377

Minnows

 

 

1

 

 

 

1

Pumpkinseed

 

 

13

2

 

7

22

White sucker

16

9

13

81

31

167

317

Total

104

422

135

287

235

598

1781

 

 

Table 3.0-18

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 15 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing

Seining1

Total

May

July2

September3

May

July

September

Central mudminnow

14

-

-

-

-

-

14

Total

14

-

-

-

-

-

14

1 Seining was not done at this site.

2 Gill Creek upstream of Garlow Road was dry; therefore, no sampling was performed on Tuscarora Nation land in July.

3 No sampling was performed on Tuscarora Nation land in September.

 

Table 3.0-19

Number of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 at Site 16 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Number Caught

Electrofishing1

Seining1

Total

May

July2

September3

May

July2

September3

Brook stickleback

4

-

-

1

-

-

5

Central mudminnow

15

-

-

 

-

-

15

Total

19

-

-

1

-

-

20

1 Electrofishing was conducted upstream and independently of the 20-foot seine haul.

2 Gill Creek upstream of Garlow Road was dry; therefore, no sampling was performed on Tuscarora Nation land in July.

3 No sampling was performed at this site in September.

 

Table 3.0-20

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek during 2004 and Measured at Site 1 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing1

Seining1

May

July

September

May

July

September

Largemouth bass

 

 

63

 

 

96

 

 

 

84

 

 

87

 

 

 

95

 

 

63

 

 

 

72

 

 

91

 

 

 

78

 

 

63

Smallmouth bass

 

 

64

 

 

 

1 Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine.

 

Table 3.0-21

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 and Measured at Site 2 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing1

Seining2

May

July

September

May

July

September

Largemouth bass

-

-

-

113

162

57

 

-

-

-

 

 

72

 

-

-

-

 

 

63

 

-

-

-

 

 

53

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site.

2 50-foot seine.

 

Table 3.0-22

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 and Measured at Site 3 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing

Seining1

May

July

September

May

July

September

Largemouth bass

 

36

75

 

35

65

 

 

41

70

 

 

73

 

 

41

59

 

 

63

 

 

36

66

 

 

105

 

 

36

 

 

 

 

Smallmouth bass

 

 

 

190

 

 

1 Electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine.

 

Table 3.0-23

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 and Measured at Site 4 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing1

Seining2

May

July

September

May

July

September

Largemouth bass

-

-

-

 

42

 

 

-

-

-

 

108

 

 

-

-

-

 

38

 

 

-

-

-

 

42

 

1 Electrofishing was not done at this site.

2 50-foot seine.

 

Table 3.0-24

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 and Measured at Site 5 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing

Seining1

May

July

September

May

July

September

Largemouth bass

 

 

71

-

-

-

1 Seining was not done at this site.

 

Table 3.0-25

Total Length (mm) of Fish Caught in Gill Creek During 2004 and Measured at Site 7 by Common Name, Method of Capture, and Month

Common Name

Total Length (mm)

Electrofishing

Seining

May1

July2

September3

May1

July2

September3

Largemouth bass

-

 

67

210

 

-

1 Gear used in May was a 20-foot seine only.

2 Method used in July included electrofishing downstream into a blocking seine (no largemouth bass were caught).

3 Method used in September included electrofishing only.

 

REFERENCES

R1019216262 \ Text Reference: Arend 1999 \ Arend, K.  1999.  Macrohabitat Classification.  In: Aquatic Habitat Assessment: Common Methods.  ed. M.B. Bain and N.J. Stevenson.  Bethesda, MD: American Fisheries Society.  pp. 75-93.

R1019216256 \ Text Reference: Nelson et al. 2004 \ Nelson, J.S., E.J. Crossman, H Espinosa-Perez, L.T. Findley, C.R. Gilbert, R.N. Lea, and J.D. Williams.  2004.  Common and Scientific Names of Fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico, Sixth Edition. Special Publication 29.  Bethesda, MD: American Fisheries Society.

 

APPENDIX A

Standard Operating Procedures

Objective

Determine the taxonomic groups of fish present in Gill Creek and their relative abundance during spring, summer and fall of 2004.

Investigation Area

The investigation area was Gill Creek from Buffalo Avenue, to approximately 2,500 feet upstream of Garlow Road on Tuscarora Land (Figure 2.1-1).  Tributaries of Gill Creek and Hyde Park Lake were not included in the investigation area.

Sites

At least one site in each of twelve reaches that were identified in the report entitled “Ecological Condition of Gill, Fish, and Cayuga Creeks” will be sampled if water conditions permit, except for Reaches G1 (downstream of Buffalo Avenue), G6 (the portion of Gill Creek that passes through a concrete culvert, underneath an active rail yard), and G7 (the pond just downstream of the rail yard).

Sampling

Sampling will be done during daylight hours by backpack electrofishing, seining, or a combination of the two.  The sampling gear to use will be selected based on condition found at each site.

Seining  -- Two bag seines will be available for this project, and used as appropriate.  A large (50 ft x 6 ft x ¼ in) or a small (20 ft x 6 ft x ¼ in) seine will be deployed depending on field conditions.   Seining will be conducted as possible in shallow waters with smooth bottom where it is most effective.

The lead line must remain in contact with the bottom to prevent fish from escaping under the net.  If the lead line gets snagged, the bag section will be lifted just enough so that the obstacle is cleared.  Snags as discussed above will be noted in the pen computer.

If target species are observed escaping, the seine haul will be redone in a different location that has not been disturbed by the first pull.  A haul will still be acceptable if the net gets snagged as long as fish are not observed escaping.

One end of the bag seine will be kept close to shore while the other person moves offshore to extend the net.  Both ends of the seine will then be moved simultaneously over a distance moving in an upstream direction.

When the haul is completed, the offshore end will be brought back to shore so that both ends are rejoined.  The seine will be brought back onto shore by having one person hauling both lead lines together as close to the bottom as possible while the other person pulls on the floating top line on either side.

If more appropriate to a station, and as an alternative to the above, the offshore pole (brail) will be swept upstream to shore making an arc with the shore-brail as the fixed center of the arc.

Electrofishing -- Electrofishing will be conducted using a Smith-Root type L-24 backpack electrofishing unit.  Electrofishing is hazardous work.  Batteries and generator can produce enough energy to injure or kill a person.

Currents applied at 20-500 Hz and as low as 0.0002 amps can cause serious injury or death.  Death is usually a result of respiratory arrest, asphyxia or ventricular fibrillation.

All members of the electrofishing crew will have received orientation on equipment and procedures.  The crew will be constituted of at least one experienced operator.

The electrofishing equipment will be inspected to check for and eliminate loose or frayed wires and connectors at each site before being used.

All crew members must wear the following protective equipment:

·         Rubber soled shoes/boots and rubber gloves.

·         Ear plugs/muff as appropriate

Mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and mollusks are to be avoided when possible.

Backpack electrofishing will be conducted during daylight.   Electrofishing will be carried out as much as possible in an upstream direction in shallow habitats, corresponding to habitats in small streams.  Moving in an upstream direction will avoid silt suspended by electrofishing activities and optimize visibility.

All fish, regardless of species, will be captured by dip netting.

Seining and Electrofishing -- As determined by field conditions, a combination of seining and backpack electrofishing may be used.  The seine will be set across the entire watered area at the downstream end of an electrofishing area.  Electrofishing will be conducted from upstream to downstream, and will end at the seine location.  As soon as electrofishing is completed, the seine will be hauled.  One end will be brought to the other end, which will remain stationary, so that both ends are rejoined.  One end of the seine will be brought to the other end by having one person hauling both lead lines together as close to the bottom as possible while the other person pulls on the floating top line on either side.

All fish captured during the electrofishing will be enumerated separately from those captured in the seine.  The electrofishing and seine data will be considered separate activities.

Species Identification, Enumeration and Length Measurements

Captured fish caught will be identified to the species level, enumerated, and returned to the site of capture.  If, at the time of capture, a positive identification cannot be made, a representative sample of those fish will be preserved in isopropyl alcohol and examined at a later time.  It is acceptable to identify young-of-the-year sunfish and minnows to the level of genus if a positive identification cannot be made at the time of capture.  If a fish that is a rare, threatened, endangered species (RTE) or species of concern (SOC) is collected, it will be returned to the river alive immediately after a positive identification is made.  All dead RTE and SOC will be frozen and saved.  NYPA will be notified of such capture as soon as possible (within 24 hours).  The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation will be notified of such capture at the end of the sampling season as required by the License to Collect and Possess Specimens.

Records of all fish preserved will be entered into the pen computer as ”Unknown A”, “Unknown B”, “Unknown C”, etc., for each location.  For each of these records, enter the number of fish preserved in the “Remark” field.

Any largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, or fish in the pike family caught will be measured to the nearest mm and examined for sexual condition and for obvious external injuries.

All spatial and fish data will be entered into a pen computer or onto cotton-based paper datasheets if the pen computer malfunctions.

 

APPENDIX B

Water Quality Data Collected in Gill Creek

Water Quality Data Collected in Gill Creek during May 2004

Date

Site

Water Temperature (°C)

Dissolved Oxygen (mg/L)

Conductivity (μs/cm)3

May 20

11

21.9

8.8

-

May 20

12

21.9

8.8

-

May 20

2

21.7

8.4

-

May 20

3

22

7.7

-

May 20

3

22

7.7

-

May 20

4

19.6

8.6

-

May 20

5

18

9.4

-

May 20

6

16.7

9.7

-

May 20

7

15.7

9

-

May 20

8

14.7

9.6

-

May 20

9

14

8.9

-

May 20

10

13.9

8.3

-

May 19

112

16.7

9.8

-

May 19

111

16.6

9.8

-

May 19

12

16.3

10.6

-

May 19

13

21.1

8.5

-

May 19

141

21.3

12.8

-

May 19

142

22.3

13.8

-

May 19

15

20

11.2

-

May 19

162

17.2

7.89

-

May 19

161

17.3

7.5

-

1Electrofishing

2Blocking seine or seine haul.

3Conductivity was not measured in May.

 

Water Quality Data Collected in Gill Creek during July 2004

Date

Site

Water Temperature (°C)

Dissolved Oxygen (mg/L)

Conductivity (μs/cm)

July 12

11

23.5

2.62

542

July 12

12

23.5

2.62

542

July 12

2

23.2

2.87

555

July 12

3

23.4

3.74

543

July 12

3

23.4

3.74

543

July 12

4

24.3

7.1

493

July 12

5

213

8.14

397

July 12

6

21.1

8.33

430

July 12

7

21.3

8.9

410

July 12

7

21.3

8.9

410

July 12

81

21.9

8.3

377

July 12

82

21.9

8.3

377

July 12

9

22

8.34

407

July 12

10

21.6

7.76

372

July 12

111

21.5

8.48

385

July 12

112

21.5

8.48

385

July 12

12

20.7

7.98

402

July 12

13

20.5

7.51

715

July 12

141

25

7.48

1032

July 12

142

25

7.48

1032

1Electrofishing

2Blocking seine or seine haul.

 

Water Quality Data Collected in Gill Creek during September 2004

Date

Site

Water Temperature (°C)

Dissolved Oxygen (mg/L)

Conductivity (μs/cm)

September 22

11

16.7

4.02

477

September 22

2

16.7

3.88

466

September 22

31

16.7

5.29

473

September 22

4

17.7

6.76

447

September 22

5

18.4

10.94

420

September 22

6

19

11.6

400

September 22

7

18.1

8.43

400

September 22

81

19.5

9.33

382

September 22

9

19.5

9.36

401

September 22

10

19.3

8.66

409

September 22

112

19.1

8.78

408

September 22

12

19.1

8.85

392

September 22

13

19

11.12

570

September 22

141

20.3

7.23

608

1At sites with combination electrofishing and seining, water quality data were collected once.

2Electrofishing and seine haul (i.e., not a blocking seine) was done at Site 11.  Water quality data were collected once at this site in September.