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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Wildlife and Fisheries Science

First Advisor

Daniel E. Hubbard

Second Advisor

Charles G. Scalet


From August through September 1992, Waterfowl Production Areas in Minnesota were sampled for the presence or absence of fish and amphibians using barrel and clover leaf minnow traps. Trap nets were used in select wetlands to sample for larger fish species. Models were developed using stepwise logistic regress ion analysis to evaluate factors influencing fish and frog distribution. The dependent variable was the presence or absence of fish or amphibian species. Independent variables were region, proximity to other wetlands, pH, total dissolved solids, several vegetational parameters, trap locations, existence and number of tributaries, trap type used, wetland class, cover type, and area of the sampled wetland. Tributaries and the number of Class V wetlands within a 1.6-km radius of the sampled wet land were positively associated with fish presence. Class III wetlands were negatively associated with the presence of fish. The likelihood of catching Leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) and wood frogs (Rana sylvatica) was lower for barrel minnow traps when compared to clover leaf traps. Agassiz Lake Plain, percent floating vegetation, and emergent trap locations were positively associated with frog presence. Ten Class IV and V wetlands were sampled using metal cylindrical-type minnow traps (barrel) to determine the influence of emergent vegetation and open water on fish location within a wetland. All traps were paired with 1 trap being set in emergent vegetation and 1 trap in open water. Loglinear nonparametric analysis indicated that fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) preferred open water and brook sticklebacks (Culaea inconstans) preferred emergent vegetation. Fish populations were determined for 11 wetlands using the Kushlan throw trap. Six of 11 wetlands contained fathead minnows with population estimates ranging from 10,000 to 1,260,000/ha. Three of 11 wetlands contained brook sticklebacks with population estimates ranging from 10,000 to 160,000/ha. Green sunfish (lepomix cyanellus) population estimates in 1 wetland was 20,000/ha. Iowa darter (Etheostoma exile) population estimates in 1 wetland was 10,000/ha. In some instances, fish species collected by the cloverleaf minnow traps were not collected by the Kushlan throw trap. The population estimates are considered crude estimates at best, due to numerous types of bias associated with the method use.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Wetlands -- Minnesota
Fish populations -- Minnesota
Amphibians -- Minnesota


Includes bibliographical references (page 40-45)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1993 Kevin L. Mixon. All rights reserved.