BIO 210


The Noturus exilis is rapidly decreasing in population and the places it inhibits. The slender madtom has been added to a lot of state's endangered species list or to their list of concerned species. There has not been that much research done on the slender madtom, and a lot of states recognize that they need to do more research about this species or its life history. However, they are not on the Federal list of endangered species.

In Mississippi, the slender madtom is part of the endangered species list. The slender madtom was last documented in Mississippi in 1998 (Mississippi's Endangered species 2001). It is suggested that a status survey be taken. This would answer the question of whether the slender madtom even exist in Mississippi anymore.

On the other hand, in Iowa, the Slender madtom is not on the endangered species list. Although, in a recent study from Anthony Sindt (2011), it puts the slender madtom into the category containing fish that were found in 40 percent less of the stream and sites that they were initially found in. Sindt (2011) also pointed out the significant decline in the distribution of the slender madtom. However, in a different, article it is claimed that the slender madtom cannot be found in the state anymore(Schmidt 1991). Both Schmidt (1991) and Sindt (2011) documented a decline in the abundance of slender madtoms found in the Iowa streams. They also both stated that the slender madtom was found as close as 2 miles from the boarder in the Ceder River in Minnesota.

The slender madtom is found on the species of concern list in Minnesota. It became part of this list in 1984, according Minnesota Department of National Resources. The slender madtom area of inhabitation has dramatically reduced since the late 1970's. This is thought to be caused by a few different reasons. A few of the reasons that the slender madtom is thought to be declining is because the water is getting dirty and isn't as clear as it used to be. Also, the loss of water in some areas with hydropower operations may be a factor (MN DNR 2013).  This concern may be because the slender madtom is found in clear opaque waters, and may not survive as well in waters that are more unclear and dirty. The same conclusions for the decline in slender madtoms were found in Wisconsin. However, of the reasons, none are for certain.

Wisconsin has even fewer slender madtoms than Minnesota. The slender madtom has been put on the endangered species list. The decline of the slender madtom in Wisconsin is also thought to be connected to the agriculture practices and changes that humans have made to their primary habitats (Lyons 1996). The Wisconisn DNR (2013) believes that the decline may have been caused by the turbidity of the water near farmland.

A suggestion was also made by don Fago, which it stated that the protection of locations known to contain the slender madtom, like the Rock River basin, should be protected, considering it is one of the few places that the slender madtom is found in the whole state of Wisconsin.  He also states that research should be done on the slender madtom. It is important to determine where they thrive, so that places can be found where the slender madtom can be relocated to (Fago 1982). This would give the ability of the slender madtom to recover from this intense decline in population and abundance. If this works, it could then be applied to other states where the slender madtom has disappeared or has severely declined. This would make a recovery from the destruction that humans have made on the environment of the slender madtom.

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