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Etheostoma scotti

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES PERCIDAE

Scientific Name: Etheostoma scotti
Species Authority: Bauer, Etnier, & Burkhead, 1995
Common Name/s:
English Cherokee Darter

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2012-01-20
Assessor/s: NatureServe
Reviewer/s: Smith, K. & Darwall, W.R.T.
Facilitator/s: Hammerson, G.A. & Ormes, M.
Justification:
This species is listed as Endangered because the extent of occurrence is less than 5000 sq km, distribution is severely fragmented, and habitat quality and quantity are declining

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This darter is endemic to the Etowah River system in northern Georgia (Bauer et al. 1995), from Raccoon Creek to Camp Creek and unnamed tributaries of the Etowah River near Dahlonega, Georgia (Freeman and Wenger 2006). It is primarily restricted to streams draining the Piedmont physiographic province and to a lesser extent the Blue Ridge physiographic province. The largest populations occur in the northern tributaries upstream of Allatoona Reservoir (USFWS 1993). See Bauer et al. (1995) for further details.
Countries:
Native:
United States
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This darter is recently known from well over 100 collection sites in several dozen small to moderately large tributary streams (see map in Etowah Aquatic Habitat Conservation Plan http://www.etowahhcp.org/background/species/scotti.htm).

Total adult population size is unknown; individual subpopulations are generally small (USFWS 2000).

Trend over the past 10 years or three generations is uncertain, but distribution and abundance probably are slowly declining.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Habitat includes pools and adjacent riffles of creeks and small rivers (Page and Burr 2011), about 1-15 meters wide, with moderate gradient and predominantly rocky bottoms; usually in shallow water in sections of reduced current, typically in runs above and below riffles and at the ecotones of riffles and backwaters; associated with large gravel, cobble, and small boulder substrates; uncommonly or rarely over bedrock, fine gravel, or sand; most abundant in sections with relatively clear water and substrates mainly clear of silt (intolerant of moderate or heavy silt deposition); intolerant of impoundment (USFWS 1993, Bauer et al. 1995).

Cherokee Darters deposit single eggs in small depressions or recesses on the surface of large gravel, small cobble and occasionally woody debris within runs, moderate to slow riffles and the tails of pools (Freeman and Wenger 2006, Storey et al. 2006).
Systems: Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Status is due primarily to past and ongoing loss of habitat resulting from impoundments, siltation, and pollution from such sources as waste discharges, agricultural runoff from crop monoculture and poultry farms, poultry processing plants, and silvicultural activities (see USFWS 1993 and 1994 for further details). Some habitat degradation (increased runoff, sedimentation, point and nonpoint sources of pollution) has resulted from increased urbanization in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The species faces imminent threats from a proposed quarry, landfills, off-river water supply impoundments, and major transportation bypasses (Bauer et al. 1995). Threats are numerous and likely to increase (Bauer et al. 1995).

Extant populations are isolated by Allatoona Reservoir and stretches of degraded habitat in tributary streams (USFWS 2000).

Jelks et al. (2008) categorized the lower, middle, and upper Etowah River populations as Endangered, based on (1) present or threatened destruction, modification, or reduction of habitat or range and (2) restricted range.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Protection needs include the following (USFWS2000): riparian zone protection, stream sedimentation abatement, control of agricultural runoff, compatible planning of suburban development in the Etowah River watershed.  The Cherokee County Water Authority is purchasing conservation easements on one tributary with Cherokee Darter populations (USFWS 2000).
Citation: NatureServe 2013. Etheostoma scotti. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 24 April 2014.
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