The Role of Tributaries in the Biology of Hudson River Fishes

Robert E. Schmidt and Thomas R. Lake abstract The objectives of this chapter are to summarize our observations of fishes in Hudson River tributaries and to document the significance of tributaries to them. Currently alewife is the only anadromous fish that extensively uses Hudson River tributaries. Several potamodromous species depend on tributaries for reproduction (at least smallmouth bass and white sucker) or reproduce in several areas including tributaries (white perch). In many cases, the data available are not adequate to determine how significant tributary spawning is in these species. Young-of-year fishes present in tributary mouths are also abundant in other habitats in the tidal Hudson River, which is also true for those species considered resident in the tributary mouths. Too fewtributaries have been examined thoroughly enough to determine whether tributaries are significant for either of these groups of fishes.

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