Theses and Dissertations

Title: Depth distribution of the bluegill, Lepomis machrochirus Raf., in farm ponds during summer stratification

Name: Byrd, Isaac Burlin

Degree: MS

Chair: Dr. H. S. Swingle

Resides: FAA Library

University: Auburn

Location: Auburn, Alabama

Date: 1950

Pages: 58

Keywords: Bluegill,Lepomis macrochirus,Farm ponds,Depth distribution,Stratification.


Depth distribution of the bluegill, Lepomis macrochirus Raf., in farm ponds was determined by the use of fish traps. Results indicated that during summer stratification bluegills were found in greatest numbers in shallow waters. Bluegills were definitely limited in their use of the deeper waters apparently by low concentrations of dissolved oxygen and high concentrations of free carbon dioxide rather than water temperature differences. Dissolved oxygen concentrations of less than 0.4 parts per million appeared to be critical to bluegills. These critical dissolved oxygen concentrations were normally accompanied by concentrations of 3.3 parts per million or more of free carbon dioxide.The depth at which critical oxygen usually occurred was the critical depth (minimum depth at which bluegills died when held in traps for 6 to 45 hours). This depth was the dividing line between those depths used extensively and those used rarely or not at all.The normal critical depth was 5 feet in a two-acre pond (FP-6) and 7 feet in a 22-acre pond (S-1) from June 24 through September 12, 1949. This variation of critical depth between ponds was apparently caused by the extent of mixing due to wave action. There were occasional temporary variations of the critical depths which occurred in both ponds caused by heavy rains, cool periods, extended cloudiness, abundance of living phytoplankton, and changes from day to night.

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