Oncorhynchus gilae apache - (Miller, 1972)
Apache Trout
Synonym(s): Oncorhynchus apache
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Oncorhynchus gilae apache (Miller, 1972) (TSN 553425)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.101654
Element Code: AFCHA02102
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Fishes - Bony Fishes - Salmon and Trouts
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Actinopterygii Salmoniformes Salmonidae Oncorhynchus
Genus Size: C - Small genus (6-20 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Behnke, R. J. 1992. Native trout of western North America. American Fisheries Society Monograph 6. xx + 275 pp.
Concept Reference Code: B92BEH01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Oncorhynchus gilae apache
Taxonomic Comments: Hybridizes with O. mykiss. Populations in Ft. Apache Indian Reservation are more genetically pure than those in Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest (Rinne and Minckley 1985). Paddy Creek population apparently comprises apache-mykiss hybrids (Loudenslager et al. 1986). Allozyme and mtDNA data may yield different conclusions regarding gene exchange between Apache trout and rainbow trout; exteme care must be exercised when considering elimination of any population that is presumed to be genetically contaminated based on allozyme data alone (Dowling and Childs 1992).

MtDNA data indicate that O. apache and O. gilae are very similar to each other, and more similar to rainbow trout (O. mykiss) than to cutthroat trout (O. clarki) (Dowling and Childs 1992). Data from karyotyping, electrophoresis, and mtDNA comparisons indicate a close genetic relationship between Gila and Apache trout, much closer than among the four major subspecies of cutthroat trout (Behnke 1992). For this reason, Behnke (1992) recognized the Gila and Apache trouts as two subspecies of a single species, O. gilae. He stated that further taxonomic revisions, based on quantitative genetic data and the lack of reproductive isolation, might classify Gila and Apache trout as subspecies of rainbow trout.

Formerly included in the genus Salmo (Smith and Stearley 1986, Robins et al. 1991).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G3T3
Global Status Last Reviewed: 28Jun2001
Global Status Last Changed: 28Jun2001
Rounded Global Status: T3 - Vulnerable
Reasons: Small native range in headwater streams in the White Mountains area of Arizona; limited suitable habitat; hybridizes readily with the rainbow trout; competes with the brook and brown trout; recovery efforts have reduced threats and increased the number of self-sustaining populations; criteria for delisting nearly met; may be conspecific with rainbow trout.
Nation: United States
National Status: N3 (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 (S3)

Other Statuses

U.S. Endangered Species Act (USESA): LT: Listed threatened (11Mar1967)
Comments on USESA: Listed Threatened as Oncorhynchus apache.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Lead Region: R2 - Southwest
IUCN Red List Category: CR - Critically endangered
American Fisheries Society Status: Threatened (01Aug2008)

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Historically occurred in Arizona in the upper Salt River division of the Gila River basin (Black and White rivers), in the headwaters of Little Colorado River drainage, and in the Blue River (specimen from KP Creek) in the San Francisco River drainage; these streams all are close to each other in the White Mountains (Behnke 1992). Introduced in many streams and lakes in Arizona. Mainly in small headwater streams above 1800 m in the White Mountains (Behnke 1992).

Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80
Number of Occurrences Comments: Aided by recovery efforts, there are nearly 30 self-sustaining, nonhybridized stream populations (Springer 1999).

Population Size: 2500 - 10,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Bonita Creek and East Fork White River may carry several thousand trout.

Overall Threat Impact Comments: Suffered 95% reduction in range due to hybridization with rainbow trout and competition with brook and brown trouts (Lee et al. 1980). Much more vulnerable to angling exploitation than is the brown trout when the two live together in the same stream (see Behnke 1992). Release of hatchery-produced fishes into waters in which pure wild populations exist probably would be detrimental. Recovery efforts have largely eliminated serious threats by establishing fish barriers, riparian revegetation, livestock exclosures, non-native fish removal, and establishment of new populations (Springer 1999).

Short-term Trend: Increase of >10%
Short-term Trend Comments: The estimated historic distribution of 950 km of stream habitat was reduced to about 50 km before restoration efforts began (Behnke 1992). USFWS (1990) categorized the status as "declining." Recovery efforts have resulted in an increasing number of self-sustaining populations (Springer 1999).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Inventory Needs: Current data are needed on population numbers of genetically pure populations.

Distribution
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Global Range: Historically occurred in Arizona in the upper Salt River division of the Gila River basin (Black and White rivers), in the headwaters of Little Colorado River drainage, and in the Blue River (specimen from KP Creek) in the San Francisco River drainage; these streams all are close to each other in the White Mountains (Behnke 1992). Introduced in many streams and lakes in Arizona. Mainly in small headwater streams above 1800 m in the White Mountains (Behnke 1992).

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: endemic to a single state or province

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AZ

Range Map
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U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AZ Apache (04001), Coconino (04005), Graham (04009), Greenlee (04011)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
15 Lower Colorado-Marble Canyon (15010001)+, Little Colorado headwaters (15020001)+, Upper Little Colorado (15020002)+, San Francisco (15040004)+, Willcox Playa (15050201)+, Black (15060101)+, Lower Verde (15060203)+*
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: Apache trout, Salmoniformes.
General Description: Grows much larger (to at least 2 kg) in lakes than in native small stream habitat (rarely exceeds 300 mm) (Behnke 1992).
Reproduction Comments: Reaches maturity in three years. Spawning occurs March-mid June, when water temperature about 8 C. Egg production is variable, (70-4000+ per female), usually listed as 200-600. Hatches at 30 days, young emerge at 20-25 mm SL in 60 days (Lee et al. 1980).

See Stearley (1992) for a discussion of the historical ecology and life history evolution of Pacific salmons and trouts (ONCORHYNCHUS).

Ecology Comments: Populations become depleted during severe winters.
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: Y
Long Distance Migrant: N
Mobility and Migration Comments: Migrates between spawning and nonspawning areas.
Riverine Habitat(s): CREEK, High gradient, MEDIUM RIVER, Moderate gradient, Pool, Riffle
Lacustrine Habitat(s): Deep water, Shallow water
Special Habitat Factors: Benthic
Habitat Comments: Subspecies APACHE: Presently restricted to clear, cool, high-elevation mountain streams that flow through cienegas (marshes) and coniferous forests, upstream from natural barriers. Introduced into several streams and lakes.

Spawns in flowing water in saucer-like depression excavated by female. Eggs are covered with gravel after fertilization takes place (Minckley 1973).

Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Feeds on aquatic and terrestrial insects (e.g., Ephemeroptera, Trichoptera, and Diptera).
Length: 40 centimeters
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary
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Restoration Potential: Prospects for long-term survival are good due to on-going captive propagation and reintroductions. However, resurveys of stocked steams in the 1980s found widespread contamination with brown trout (Williams et al. 1989).
Management Requirements: See recovery plan (1979).

See Dowling and Childs (1992) for cautions about elimination of populations that are presumed to be genetically contaminated.

Genetically pure populations can be protected from hybridization with the rainbow trout by erecting stream barriers.

Behnke (1992) emphasized the importance of maintaining genetic diversity in conjunction with any restoration program based on hatchery production.

Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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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: 23Dec2010
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Mabee,T., and G. Hammerson
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 15Mar1996
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
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  • Behnke, R. J. 1992. Native trout of western North America. American Fisheries Society Monograph 6. xx + 275 pp.

  • Behnke, R.J. 1979. Monograph of the native trouts of the genus Salmo of western North America. U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management.

  • Dowling, T. E., and M. R. Childs. 1992. Impact of hybridization on a threatened trout of the southwestern United States. Conservation Biology 6:355-364.

  • Jelks, H. L., S. J. Walsh, N. M. Burkhead, S. Contreras-Balderas, E. Díaz-Pardo, D. A. Hendrickson, J. Lyons, N. E. Mandrak, F. McCormick, J. S. Nelson, S. P. Platania, B. A. Porter, C. B. Renaud, J. Jacobo Schmitter-Soto, E. B. Taylor, and M.L. Warren, Jr. 2008. Conservation status of imperiled North American freshwater and diadromous fishes. Fisheries 33(8):372-407.

  • 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.

  • Loudenslager, E. J., J. N. Rinne, G. A. E. Gall, and R. E. David. 1986. Biochemical genetic studies of native Arizona and New Mexico trout. Southwestern Naturalist 31:221-234.

  • Matthews, J.R. and C.J. Moseley (eds.). 1990. The Official World Wildlife Fund Guide to Endangered Species of North America. Volume 1. Plants, Mammals. xxiii + pp 1-560 + 33 pp. appendix + 6 pp. glossary + 16 pp. index. Volume 2. Birds, Reptiles, Amphibians, Fishes, Mussels, Crustaceans, Snails, Insects, and Arachnids. xiii + pp. 561-1180. Beacham Publications, Inc., Washington, D.C.

  • Minckley, W. L. 1973. Fishes of Arizona. Arizona Game and Fish Department, Phoenix, Arizona. 293 pp.

  • Minckley, W. L., and J. E. Deacon. 1991. Battle Against Extinction: Native Fish Management in the American West. University of Arizona Press, Tucson. xviii + 517 pp.

  • 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.

  • Rinne, J.N. and W.L. Minkley. 1985. Patterns of variation and distribution in Apache trout (Salmo apache) relative to co-occurrence with introduced salmonids. Copeia 1985:285-292.

  • 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.

  • Smith, G. R., and R. F. Stearley. 1989. The classification and scientific names of rainbow and cutthroat trouts. Fisheries (Bethesda) 14(1):4-10.

  • Springer, C. L. 1999. Apache trout: on the brink of recovery. Endangered Species Bulletin 24:8-9.

  • Stearley, R. F. 1992. Historical ecology of Salmoninae, with special reference to Oncorhynchus. Pages 622-658 in R.L. Mayden, editor. Systematics, historical ecology, and North American freshwater fishes. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California. xxvi + 969 pp.

  • Stoltz, J., and J. Schnell (eds.). 1991. Trout: The Wildlife Series. Stackpole Books, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. 384 pp.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 1979. Arizona trout recovery plan. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Albuquerque, NM

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 1990. Endangered and threatened species recovery program: report to Congress. 406 pp.

  • Williams, J.E, J.E. Johnson, D.A. Hendrickson, S. Contreras-Balderas, J.D. Williams, M. Navarro-Mendoza, D.E. McAllister, and J.E. Deacon. 1989b. Fishes of North America endangered, threatened or of special concern: 1989. Fisheries 14(6):2-20.

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