Great Plains Natural Science Society


Date of this Version


Document Type



The Prairie Naturalist 42(3/4):80-88; 2010, pp 80-88


Distributions of native fishes have declined throughout the Great Plains region. Over 50% of native fishes within the Missouri River drainage in Wyoming have experienced declines in distributions. Thus, the primary goal of our study was to assess current distribution of rare native fishes in eastern Wyoming prairie streams. Of the 10 rare fishes sampled, goldeye (Hiodon alosoides), western silvery minnow (Hybognathus argyritis), plains minnow (H. hankinsoni), and Iowa darter (Etheostoma exile) have experienced declines in distribution over the last decade. Plains topminnow (Fundulus sciadicus) appears to be expanding to areas outside their historical distribution, while pearl dace (Margariscus margarita), hornyhead chub (Nocomis biguttatus), suckermouth minnow (Phenacobius mirabilis), fine scale dace (Phoxinus neogaeus), and orangethroat darter (Etheostoma spectabile) distributions appear stable. Our study has increased knowledge of current distribution and status ofrare fishes in eastern Wyoming prairie streams.