Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Arkansas
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Arkansas Project

Hydrologic alteration and geomorphic instability in the Illinois River Watershed and potential impacts on mussel SGCN and associated fish communities

April 2020 - April 2022


Participating Agencies

  • Arkansas Game and Fish Commission

The Illinois River Watershed (IRW) has undergone significant alteration due to recent land use and land cover (LULC) changes associated with rapid urbanization in Northwest Arkansas. We propose to (1) quantify and assess the influence of impervious surface area and other natural and anthropogenic land use factors on hydrologic alteration and geomorphic instability of gaged and ungaged streams in the IRW; (2) evaluate the influence of hydrologic alteration and LULC change on the spatial distribution of mussel SGCN (Table 1) and associated fish communities in the IRW using state aquatic GAP species location data and museum collection records; and (3) communicate findings to the public through stakeholder workshops, government forums, and an online data portal. The timeline for implementation of the project will be 2 years.