Date of Award

Spring 5-7-2022

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science - Biology

Department

Biology

First Advisor

Dr. Carmen Montana

Abstract

The introduction of invasive species is one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. Once established, invasive species often cause irreversible ecological damage on native communities. Here, I investigated the pathway of introduction and ecological impacts of the sheepshead minnow (C. variegatus) and the gulf killifish (F. grandis). Both species were thought to have been introduced into inland Texas waters via bait-bucket releases and have caused native populations of their inland congeners to decline. While I did not find evidence that either species were being sold in inland shops, bait industry experts did reveal other potentially harmful species, which are permitted for sale, being distributed throughout the state. Investigation of each species ecological niches also revealed overlap is aspects of invasive species’ feeding ecology with their native congeners in the Brazos and Red River basins. This overlap indicates possible negative interactions that could lead to declines in native fish populations

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Tuesday, May 02, 2023

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