In 2015, post construction, we conducted fish, mussel, aquatic macroinvertebrate, and bird surveys in the corridor and found:

 

Alasmidonta.jpgFor mussels we found

  • 335 live individuals of 12 mussel species
  • Three most common species were
    • White Heelsplitter (Lasmigona complanata),
    • Plain Pocketbook (Lampsilis cardium), and
    • Cylindrical Papershell (Anodontoides ferussacianus)
  • Captured live individuals of the state-threatened Slippershell Mussel (Alasmidonta viridis)

 

 

RTHU_cover photo.jpg

 

For birds we conducted searches and circular plot counts and found

  • 61 species of birds
  • One state-endangered species, Osprey, at three locations
  • sparrows were the densest species group overall

 

 

 

For fish we used minnow seines and backpack electroshockers to survey.

In small streams we found:

  • 5,638 fish representing 27 species iowadarterbucket.jpg
  • 1 state-listed species, the Iowa Darter (Etheostoma exile), at 6 sites
  • The 3 most abundant species in small streams were the
    • Brook Stickleback (Culaea inconstans),
    • Southern Redbelly Dace (Chrosomus erythrogaster),
    • Central Stoneroller (Campostoma anomalum)

 

 Central Stoneroller (Campostoma anomalum)In larger streams

  • 1,745 fish representing 23 species
  • 1 state-listed species, the Iowa Darter (Etheostoma exile), at 2 sites
  • The 4 most abundant species were the
    • Southern Redbelly Dace (Chrosomus erythrogaster),
    • Central Stoneroller (Campostoma anomalum),
    • Bigmouth Shiner (Notropis dorsalis), and
    • Redfin Shiner (Lythrurus umbratilis)

 

 In the Kishwaukee River

  • GravelChub.jpg575 fish representing 30 species
  • 1 state-listed species, the Gravel Chub (Erimystax x-punctatus
  • The 3 most abundant species were the
    • Sand Shiner (Notropis stramineus),
    • Spotfin Shiner (Cyprinella spiloptera), and
    • Banded Darter (Etheostoma zonale)

 

For aquatic macroinvertebrates we used the ILEPA 20-Jab Allocation Method for wadeable streams.

  • Habitat assessment showed impairment compared to Illinois reference conditions at all sites but ranged from “Poor” to just under “Good”
  • Macroinvertebrate Index of Biotic Integrity rated 1 site as “Exceptional,”  2 as “Good,and 1 as “Fair”
  • Total taxa richness ranged from 18 to 26 across sites
  • Kishwaukee River had an “exceptional” biotic integrity rating