Movements and Home Ranges of Smallmouth Bass In A Recently Restored Urban Stream

James Lukey, Jeffrey A. Stein

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


River restoration effort have become frequent in our increasing urbanized environment with the restoration of aquatic diversity as a common goal. Smallmouth bass are an important sports fish and sensitive species that are impacted by urbanization. Restoration efforts and improved riverine habitats lead to changes in fish movement and behavior. This study compared the location, movement and home ranges of smallmouth bass between seasons, between fish size groups, between home pool site and to previous studies. Twenty-five fish in the West Branch of the DuPage River were implanted with acoustic transmitters. Active tracking was undertaken from spring to autumn using a hydrophone mounted on a canoe, while passive tracking occurred year-round using an acoustic array of VR2W monitoring receivers. The mean home ranges size did not differ between fish size classes or season. Residency of smallmouth bass showed that tagged fish were most active in summer and least active in winter. Long migrations of over 1000 m were seen for 47.4% of the tagged fish, most of which occurred in either spring or autumn and were in both the upstream and downstream directions. Two types of movement behaviors are present in the smallmouth bass population, sedentary and migratory types. For the migratory type, these fish were highly likely to return to a home pool after long migrations. This study showed that smallmouth bass in the West Branch of the DuPage River had much larger home ranges when compared to previous studies. This may be the result of a smaller forage base in this recently restored reach.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGreat Waters, Great Lands, Great Responsibilities: 76th Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference, 24-27 January 2016, Grand Rapids, Michigan
StatePublished - 2016


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