White River Fish Sampling Project Complete

(UNDATED) – Fish community, water chemistry, and macroinvertebrate (water insect) sampling has concluded for the White River Mainstem Project.

The project was a collaborative effort between the DNR, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, and the Muncie Sanitary District’s Bureau of Water Quality to sample the West Fork White River and White River mainstem from its headwaters to its confluence with the Wabash River.

More than 17,000 fish comprising 93 species were collected from the 62 fish sample stations. Some of the less commonly found species collected were the American eel, shovelnose sturgeon, mountain madtom, and harlequin darter. Sites will be evaluated using the Index of Biotic Integrity, which is a metric that represents the overall health of the fish community. Sites with more darters and minnows, sensitive species, and insect-eating fish receive higher scores, which indicate better environmental conditions.

This 40-pound flathead catfish was caught near Bloomfield.

Detailed information was collected on game fish species, including smallmouth bass, rock bass, and catfish species. Several 18-plus inch smallmouth bass, 9-plus inch rock bass, and 25-plus inch channel catfish were collected during sampling. The largest fish collected was a 40-pound flathead catfish.

Game fish information that is expected to come out next year will be incorporated into management reports on the Where to Fish Map.

For more information about the project and to view individual site information, please visit 2020 White River Mainstem Project story map.