Dennis Tol

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Wildlife and Fisheries Science


The fish populations of a 193 km (120 mi) section of the James River between Tacoma Park and Redfield, South Dakota that is scheduled for stream modification under the Oahe Irrigation project were evaluated from October 74 to July 76. Twenty-two species of fish were captured in the James River between Tacoma Park and Redfield, South Dakota. The fishes use the area primarily as a spawning ground and nursery for young-of-the-year. Evidence of spawning was found for 19 species of fish. Only a residual population of forage fishes, young-of-the-year of various species, and a few adult black bullheads attempt to overwinter in the area. Dissolved oxygen was the only water quality factor limiting to the fishes. Conductance, alkalinity, calcium hardness, magnesium hardness, and total hardness increased under the ice in the James River, a condition that also occurs under the ice in prairie lakes and farm ponds. Turbidity was less in the flooded areas. The flooded areas acted as a natural buffer against downstream flooding. During the 1975 summer the major food source for piscivorous and omnivorous fishes was young-of-the-year carp. The fishes showed good growth when compared with fishes from other areas, but were relatively short-lived. They displayed excellent condition, which may have been a result of good growing conditions during the sampling period. Low yearly flow appeared to adversely affect fish growth. Of 8,065 fishes captured from the 1976 spring migration, 99% were carp, northern pike, and black bullheads.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Stream channelization -- South Dakota -- Environmental aspects
Fishes -- South Dakota --James River
James River (S.D.)


Includes bibliographical references (pages 67-69)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


No Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Only