Fundulus zebrinus - Jordan and Gilbert, 1883
Plains Killifish
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Fundulus zebrinus Jordan and Gilbert, 1883 (TSN 165658)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.791402
Element Code: AFCNB04210
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Fishes - Bony Fishes - Other Bony Fishes
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Actinopterygii Cyprinodontiformes Fundulidae Fundulus
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Nelson, J. S., E. J. Crossman, H. Espinosa-Perez, L. T. Findley, C. R. Gilbert, R. N. Lea, and J. D. Williams. 2004. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 29, Bethesda, Maryland. 386 pp.
Concept Reference Code: B04NEL01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Fundulus zebrinus
Taxonomic Comments: Fundulus zebrinus kansae is now recognized as a distinct species, F. kansae (Nelson et al. 2004). Allozyme and mtDNA data indicate that a large phylogenetic break exists, generally corresponding to the taxa zebrinus and kansae (Kreiser et al. 2001). Kreiser et al. suggested that zebrinus and kansae should be recognized as distinct species. However, the described range of kansae (Miller 1955) includes the Red River and areas northward, whereas the northern clade indicated by the genetic data does not include the Red River. Pending further data, we here include the Red River population in F. zebrinus. Page and Burr (2011) included kansae in F. zebrinus.

Removed from the genus Fundulus (Cyprinodontidae) and placed in the monotypic genus Plancterus (Fundulidae) by Parenti (1981); Plancterus is regarded as a subgenus of Fundulus by other authorites; the 1991 AFS checklist (Robins et al. 1991) did not accept the generic or family changes and retained this species in Fundulus (Cyprinodontidae). A possible senior synonym, F. adinia, exists for F. zebrinus, but because types apparently are lost, F. adinia considered a nomen dubium by Sublette et al. (1990). See Wiley (1986) for a study of the evolutionary relationships of Fundulus topminnows based on morphological characters. See Cashner et al. (1992) for an allozyme-based phylogenetic analysis of the genus Fundulus.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 03Feb2012
Global Status Last Changed: 21Oct1998
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by inspection
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: N5 (05Dec1996)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Arizona (SNA), Navajo Nation (SNA), Nevada (SNA), New Mexico (S4), Oklahoma (S4), Texas (S5), Utah (SNA)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Range includes the Red River, Brazos River, Colorado River, Galveston Bay, and Pecos River drainages in Texas and New Mexico (Kreiser et al. 2001). Populations of the Fundulus zebrinus-kansae group in southern Montana, southwestern South Dakota, northern and central Wyoming, western Colorado, eastern and southern Utah, northwestern New Mexico, northern Arizona, and Big Bend region of Texas are introduced (Poss and Miller 1983). Introduced populations also occur in Nevada (Glen Clemmer, pers. comm., 1998).

Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300
Number of Occurrences Comments: This species is represented by a large number of occurrences (subpopulations).

Population Size: 10,000 to >1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Total population size is unknown but presumably exceeds 10,000. This species is common throughout most of the native range in west and north Texas (Mark Gallyoun and Gary Garrett, pers. comm., 1998).

Overall Threat Impact Comments: No major threats are known.

Short-term Trend: Decline of <30% to relatively stable
Short-term Trend Comments: Trend over the past three generations is uncertain but probably relatively stable or slowly declining.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)) Range includes the Red River, Brazos River, Colorado River, Galveston Bay, and Pecos River drainages in Texas and New Mexico (Kreiser et al. 2001). Populations of the Fundulus zebrinus-kansae group in southern Montana, southwestern South Dakota, northern and central Wyoming, western Colorado, eastern and southern Utah, northwestern New Mexico, northern Arizona, and Big Bend region of Texas are introduced (Poss and Miller 1983). Introduced populations also occur in Nevada (Glen Clemmer, pers. comm., 1998).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AZexotic, NM, NNexotic, NVexotic, OK, TX, UTexotic

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
NM Union (35059)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
11 Cimarron headwaters (11040001)+, Upper Prairie Dog Town Fork Red (11120103), Lower Prairie Dog Town Fork Red (11120105), Lower Salt Fork Red (11120202), Middle North Fork Red (11120302), Lower North Fork Red (11120303), Elm Fork Red (11120304), Groesbeck-Sandy (11130101), Blue-China (11130102), Farmers-Mud (11130201), Cache (11130202), West Cache (11130203), Northern Beaver (11130208), Lake Texoma (11130210), Washita headwaters (11130301), Upper Washita (11130302), Middle Washita (11130303), Lower Washita (11130304), Bois D'arc-Island (11140101)
12 Denton (12030104), Lower Trinity-Kickapoo (12030202), Salt Fork Brazos (12050007), Middle Brazos-Millers (12060101), Middle Brazos-Lake Whitney (12060202), North Bosque (12060204), Colorado headwaters (12080002), Buchanan-Lyndon B (12090201), Austin-Travis Lakes (12090205), Pedernales (12090206)
13 Pecos headwaters (13060001), Pintada Arroyo (13060002), Upper Pecos (13060003), Taiban (13060004), Arroyo Del Macho (13060005), Upper Pecos-Long Arroyo (13060007), Rio Hondo (13060008), Rio Felix (13060009), Upper Pecos-Black (13060011), Lower Pecos-Red Bluff Reservoir (13070001), Delaware (13070002), Lower Pecos (13070008), Tunas (13070009), Independence (13070010)
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed (based on multiple information sources) Help
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A small fish.
Reproduction Comments: Spawns in summer. Maximum fertility of females in second year, beyond which most do not live.
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Riverine Habitat(s): CREEK, Low gradient, MEDIUM RIVER, Moderate gradient, Pool
Habitat Comments: Habitat includes runs, pools, backwaters, or edges of shallow (rarely deeper than 15 cm), sandy-bottomed, turbid headwaters, creeks, and small to medium rivers with slow to moderate current; many localities are highly alkaline or saline (Lee et al. 1980, Page and Burr 2011). This species commonly occurs in swift shallow water in southwestern Kansas. Spawning occurs n small shallow pools over sand or gravel/rubble bottoms.
Adult Food Habits: Herbivore, Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Herbivore, Invertivore
Food Comments: Insects and other aquatic invertebrates make up bulk of diet; diatoms and other plant materials ingested when invertebrates scarce. Feeds on bottom or at surface; may dig into substrate.
Length: 10 centimeters
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Group Name: Killifishes (Cyprinodontids)

Use Class: Not applicable
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on evidence of historical presence, or current and likely recurring presence, at a given location. Such evidence minimally includes collection or reliable observation and documentation of one or more individuals (including eggs and larvae) in appropriate habitat.
Separation Barriers: Dam lacking a suitable fishway; high waterfall; upland habitat.
Alternate Separation Procedure: Each spring system that is undivided by a barrier constitutes a single distinct occurrence. Otherwise, use a separation distance of 10 km for any type of aquatic habitat.
Separation Justification: Separation distance is arbitrary. Because of the difficulty in defining suitable versus unsuitable habitat, especially with respect to dispersal, and to simplify the delineation of occurrences, a single separation distance is used regardless of habitat quality.
Date: 21Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 03Feb2012
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Hammerson, G.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 03Feb2012
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
Help
  • Allen, C. R., S. Demarais, and R. S. Lutz. 1994. Red imported fire ant impact on wildlife: an overview. The Texas Journal of Science 46(1):51-59.

  • Anderson, Allison A., C. Hubbs, K. O. Winemiller, and R. J. Edwards. 1995. Texas freshwater fish assemblages following three decades of environmental change. The Southwest Naturalist 40(3):314-321.

  • Baxter, G. T., and M. D. Stone. 1995. Fishes of Wyoming. Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Cheyenne, Wyoming. 290 pp.

  • Cashner, R. C., J. S. Rogers, and J. M. Grady. 1992. Phylogenetic studies of the genus Fundulus. Pages 421-437 in R.L. Mayden, editor. Systematics, historical ecology, and North American freshwater fishes. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California. xxvi + 969 pp.

  • Eberle, M., S. Hoofer, N. Mandrak, and T. Wenke. 1997. Assessment of fish communities in western Kansas streams during 1994-1996. Nongame Program Report, Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, Emporia and Pratt. 8 pp.

  • Huver, C. W. 1973. A bibliography of the genus Fundulus. G. K. Hall and Company, Boston. v + 138 pp.

  • Kreiser, B. R., J. B. Mitton, and J. D. Woodling. 2001. Phylogeography of the plains killifish, Fundulus zebrinus. Evolution 55:339-350.

  • La Rivers, I. 1994. Fishes and fisheries of Nevada. University of Nevada Press, Reno. 782 pp.

  • Lee, D. S., C. R. Gilbert, C. H. Hocutt, R. E. Jenkins, D. E. McCallister, and J. R. Stauffer, Jr. 1980. Atlas of North American freshwater fishes. North Carolina State Museum of Natural History, Raleigh. 867 pp.

  • Miller, R. R. 1955. An annotated list of the American cyprinodontid fishes of the genus Fundulus, with the description of Fundulus persimilis from Yucatan. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan 568:1-25.

  • Minckley, W. L., G. K. Meffe, and D. L. Soltz. 1991a. Conservation and management of short-lived fishes: the cyprinodontoids. Pages 247-82 in W. L. Minckley and J. E. Deacon (editors). Battle Against Extinction: Native Fish Management in the American West. University of Arizona Press, Tucson, Arizona.

  • Nelson, J. S., E. J. Crossman, H. Espinosa-Perez, L. T. Findley, C. R. Gilbert, R. N. Lea, and J. D. Williams. 2004. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 29, Bethesda, Maryland. 386 pp.

  • Page, L. M., H. Espinosa-Pérez, L. T. Findley, C. R. Gilbert, R. N. Lea, N. E. Mandrak, R. L. Mayden, and J. S. Nelson. 2013. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Seventh edition. American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 34, Bethesda, Maryland.

  • Page, L. M., and B. M. Burr. 1991. A field guide to freshwater fishes: North America north of Mexico. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, Massachusetts. 432 pp.

  • Page, L. M., and B. M. Burr. 2011. Peterson field guide to freshwater fishes of North America north of Mexico. Second edition. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston. xix + 663 pp.

  • Parenti, L. R. 1981. A phylogenetic and biogeographic analysis of cyprinodontiform fishes (Teleostei, Atherinomorpha). Bulletin of the American Museum Natural History 168:335-557.

  • Patton, T. M. 1997. Distribution and status of fishes in the Missouri River drainage in Wyoming: Implications for identifying conservation areas. Ph.D. dissertation, University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming.

  • Pflieger, W. L. 1997a. Fishes of Missouri. Revised Edition. Missouri Department of Conservation, Jefferson City, Missouri.

  • Poss, S. G., and R. R. Miller. 1983. Taxonomic status of the plains killifish, Fundulus zebrinus. Copeia 1983:55-67.

  • RHODES, KEVIN AND CLARK HUBBS. 1992. RECOVERY OF PECOS RIVER FISHES FROM A RED TIDE FISH KILL. SOUTHWEST. NAT. 37(2):178-187.

  • Robins, C.R., R.M. Bailey, C.E. Bond, J.R. Brooker, E.A. Lachner, R.N. Lea, and W.B. Scott. 1991. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States and Canada. American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 20. 183 pp.

  • Sigler, W. F., and J. W. Sigler. 1987. Fishes of the Great Basin: a natural history. University of Nevada Press, Reno.

  • Sigler, W. F., and J. W. Sigler. 1996. Fishes of Utah[:] a natural history. Univ. Utah Press, Salt Lake City. xxiii + 375 pp.

  • Sigler, W. F., and R. R. Miller. 1963. Fishes of Utah. Utah Department of Fish and Game, Salt Lake City, Utah. 203 pp.

  • WILDE, GENE R. AND KENNETH G. OSTRAND. 1999. CHANGES IN THE FISH ASSEMBLAGE OF AN INTERMITTENT PRAIRIE STREAM UPSTREAM FROM A TEXAS IMPOUNDMENT. TEXAS J. SCI. 51:203-210.

  • Wiley, E.O. 1986. A study of the evolutionary relationships of Fundulus topminnows (Teleostei: Fundulidae). American Zoologist 26:121-130.

References for Watershed Distribution Map
  • Lee, D. S., C. R. Gilbert, C. H. Hocutt, R. E. Jenkins, D. E. McAllister, and J. R. Stauffer, Jr. 1980. Atlas of North American freshwater fishes. North Carolina State Museum of Natural History, Raleigh, North Carolina. i-x + 854 pp.

  • Sublette, J. E., M. D Hatch, and M. Sublette. 1990. The fishes of New Mexico. University New Mexico Press, Albuquerque, New Mexico. 393 pp.

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