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MU Fisheries Techniques River Field Day Year 5
Midwest Region, October 23, 2009
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The sun does not always shine and the birds don’t always sing when it comes to conducting field work.  On a windy, wet gray day in October, students from MU met on the banks of the big muddy found out just that.   The students come to learn big river fish sampling techniques from the well versed field crews of Columbia Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office and were well prepared for the weather and  the weather did not dampen the interest of the group. 

 

For the past five years Columbia FWCO has teamed up with Dr. Douglas Noltie and the University of Missouri-Columbia (MU) to teach the big river component of his Fisheries Techniques course.  As with most Midwest  Fish Tech class, Dr. Noltie’s is largely focused on small impoundment management.  Realizing riverine fisheries management is a growing area of fisheries sciences, Dr. Noltie has enlisted the help of Columbia FWCO.

 

Nineteen students met us at the boat ramp ready to work on the Big Muddy.  Students were divided into four teams to get hands-on training with push trawl, stern trawls, set lines, and drifting trammel nets.  Project leader Tracy Hill kicked off the field trip with a 10,000 foot view of what our office does on the Missouri River and our efforts to recover the endangered pallid sturgeon.  Objectives of working on the river were discussed as well as our different Missouri River projects. The students enjoyed experiencing a different aspect of fisheries management and a change in scenery from the ponds they had been working on all semester.  A change in fauna from bass, bluegill and channel catfish to sturgeon, flathead catfish, drum, buffalo, blue suckers and Asian carp was refreshing to the students as well. 

 

In the past working with upper classmen from MU has enabled the Columbia NFWCO to shed light on new developments in riverine sampling techniques and to get to know prospective student interns.  We are honored to be respected by the University enough to have been selected to help train tomorrow’s biologists.  

Contact Info: Andrew Starostka, 5732342132 x119, andy_starostka@fws.gov



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