Phenacobius uranops - Cope, 1867
Stargazing Minnow
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Phenacobius uranops Cope, 1867 (TSN 163506)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.106303
Element Code: AFCJB30050
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Fishes - Bony Fishes - Minnows and Carps
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Actinopterygii Cypriniformes Cyprinidae Phenacobius
Genus Size: B - Very small genus (2-5 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: 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.
Concept Reference Code: B91ROB01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Phenacobius uranops
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G4
Global Status Last Reviewed: 26Feb2008
Global Status Last Changed: 17Sep1996
Rounded Global Status: G4 - Apparently Secure
Reasons: Numerous occurrences and relatively stable populations in the Tennessee, Cumberland, and Barren-Green river drainages in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, and Georgia.
Nation: United States
National Status: N4 (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 Alabama (S1S2), Georgia (S1), Kentucky (S2S3), Tennessee (S4), Virginia (S3)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 20,000-200,000 square km (about 8000-80,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Range includes the Tennessee and Cumberland river drainages, and the Barren-Green river system of the Ohio River drainage, in Highland Rim and Ridge and Valley regions, in Kentucky (Burr and Warren 1986), Virginia (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994), Tennessee (Etnier and Starnes 1993), Georgia, and Alabama (Boschung and Mayden 2004). This minnow occurs widely in uplands of the Tennessee River drainage, Alabama, Tennessee, and Virginia, avoiding higher gradients in Blue Ridge section of drainage in North Carolina (Lee et al. 1980). In the Tennessee River drainage in Virginia, this species is contiguously distributed or nearly so in main stems in the Valley and Ridge Province (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994). It is presently known from Shoal Creek and Elk River in Alabama (Boschung and Mayden 2004).

Number of Occurrences: 81 - 300
Number of Occurrences Comments: This species is represented by a large number of occurrences (subpopulations). Etnier and Starnes (1993) mapped several dozen collection sites in numerous streams in Tennessee. Jenkins and Burkhead (1994) mapped several dozen collection sites that are well distributed throughout the range in Virginia. Burr and Warren (1986) mapped a few dozen widely distributed collection sites in Kentucky. Boschung and Mayden (2004) mapped several collection sites in the small range of the species in Alabama.

Population Size: 10,000 - 1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Total adult population size is unknown but presumably exceeds 10,000 (assuming at least 100 subpopulations averaging more than 100 adults). This minnow is common only in upper Tennessee and Green river drainages (Page and Burr 1991), and it is much more common in the Tennessee River drainage than in the Cumberland River drainage (Boschung and Mayden 2004). Jenkins and Burkhead (1994) characterized this species as "usually uncommon." Burr and Warren (1986) reported that this species is occasional and locally common in the upper Green and Barren river systems in Kentucky, rare (possibly extirpated) in the middle Cumberland River drainage in Kentucky.

Overall Threat Impact: Low
Overall Threat Impact Comments: This species has not been reported to be imperiled anywhere in its range (Boschung and Mayden 2004), though the species is state-listed as threatened in Georgia, which comprises a very small portion of the historical range, and it is a special concern species in Kentucky.

Locally, this fish is detrimentally affected by aquatic habitat degradation from gravel/sand removal or quarrying and construction/operation of impoundments and by siltation and increased turbidity from coal mining, agriculture, urbanization/development, general construction, and silviculture (Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources).

Short-term Trend: Relatively Stable (<=10% change)
Short-term Trend Comments: Extent of occurrence, area of occupancy, number of subpopulations, and population size now appear to be relatively stable. Warren et al. (2000) categorized this species as "currently stable."

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%
Long-term Trend Comments: Overall, the long-term trend is relatively stable or slightly declining, but this species is possibly extirpated from the middle Cumberland River drainage in Kentucky, where Burr and Warren (1986) mapped three collection sites. More recent data from the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (through May 2005) indicate a continuing lack of recent records from that drainage.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (20,000-200,000 square km (about 8000-80,000 square miles)) Range includes the Tennessee and Cumberland river drainages, and the Barren-Green river system of the Ohio River drainage, in Highland Rim and Ridge and Valley regions, in Kentucky (Burr and Warren 1986), Virginia (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994), Tennessee (Etnier and Starnes 1993), Georgia, and Alabama (Boschung and Mayden 2004). This minnow occurs widely in uplands of the Tennessee River drainage, Alabama, Tennessee, and Virginia, avoiding higher gradients in Blue Ridge section of drainage in North Carolina (Lee et al. 1980). In the Tennessee River drainage in Virginia, this species is contiguously distributed or nearly so in main stems in the Valley and Ridge Province (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994). It is presently known from Shoal Creek and Elk River in Alabama (Boschung and Mayden 2004).

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 nation

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, GA, KY, TN, VA

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AL Lauderdale (01077), Limestone (01083)
GA Catoosa (13047), Walker (13295)
KY Adair (21001), Allen (21003), Barren (21009), Butler (21031), Casey (21045), Cumberland (21057)*, Edmonson (21061), Grayson (21085)*, Green (21087), Hardin (21093)*, Hart (21099), Laurel (21125)*, Metcalfe (21169)*, Monroe (21171)*, Rockcastle (21203)*, Taylor (21217), Warren (21227)
VA Lee (51105), Washington (51191)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
05 Upper Green (05110001)+, Barren (05110002)+, Rockcastle (05130102)+*, Upper Cumberland-Lake Cumberland (05130103)+*, Obey (05130105)
06 North Fork Holston (06010101)+, South Fork Holston (06010102), Watauga (06010103), Holston (06010104), Lower French Broad (06010107), Nolichucky (06010108), Watts Bar Lake (06010201), Lower Little Tennessee (06010204), Upper Clinch (06010205), Powell (06010206)+, Lower Clinch (06010207), Middle Tennessee-Chickamauga (06020001)+, Wheeler Lake (06030002)*, Upper Elk (06030003), Lower Elk (06030004)+, Pickwick Lake (06030005)+, Upper Duck (06040002), Lower Duck (06040003), Buffalo (06040004)
+ 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 minnow with upward-facing eyes, suckerlike lips, and a slender body.
Reproduction Comments: Spawns in May and June, possibly also late April (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994). Sexually mature in 1 year, life span usually less than 3 years (Etnier and Starnes 1993, Jenkins and Burkhead 1994).
Ecology Comments: Adults may feed in mobile groups of 10-20 individuals (Etnier and Starnes 1993, Jenkins and Burkhead 1994).
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Riverine Habitat(s): CREEK, High gradient, MEDIUM RIVER, Moderate gradient, Riffle
Habitat Comments: Habitat includes rocky and, more frequently, gravelly runs and riffles in warm, generally clear, moderate- to high-gradient creeks and small to medium rivers (Lee et al. 1980, Burr and Warren 1986, Page and Burr 1991, Etnier and Starnes 1993, Jenkins and Burkhead 1994). Adults and juveniles generally occur over clean or very slightly silted gravel and small to medium rubble; small young have been found in calm shallows at a sand-gravel bar (Jenkins and Burkhead 1993). In Kentucky, young are often near beds of water-willow or in the margins of flowing pools (Burr and Warren 1986).
Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Diet includes aquatic insect larvae (Etnier and Starnes 1993, Jenkins and Burkhead 1994).
Phenology Comments: Feeds in daylight; feeding occurs into winter (Jenkins and Burkhead 1994).
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: Small Cyprinids

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. For some species (e.g., slender chub), an impoundment may constitute a barrier. For others (e.g., flame chub) a stream larger than 4th order may be a barrier.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Justification: Data on dispersal and other movements generally are not available. In some species, individuals may migrate variable distances between spawning areas and nonspawning habitats.

Separation distances (in aquatic kilometers) for cyprinids are arbitrary but reflect the presumption that movements and appropriate separation distances generally should increase with fish size. Hence small, medium, and large cyprinids, respectively, have increasingly large separation distances. Separation distance reflects the likely low probability that two occupied locations separated by less than several kilometers of aquatic habitat would represent truly independent populations over the long term.

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.

Occupied locations that are separated by a gap of 10 km or more of any aquatic habitat that is not known to be occupied represent different occurrences. However, it is important to evaluate seasonal changes in habitat to ensure that an occupied habitat occurrence for a particular population does not artificially separate spawning areas and nonspawning areas as different occurrences simply because there have been no collections/observations in an intervening area that may exceed the separation distance.

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: 26Feb2008
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Hammerson, G.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 26Feb2008
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
  • Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. 2005. Conserving Alabama's wildlife: a comprehensive strategy. Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. Montgomery, Alabama. 303 pages. [Available online at http://www.dcnr.state.al.us/research-mgmt/cwcs/outline.cfm ]

  • Boschung, H. T., and R. L. Mayden. 2004. Fishes of Alabama. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C. 736 pages.

  • Etnier, David A. and Wayne C. Starnes. 1993. The Fishes of Tennessee. University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville. 681 pp.

  • Mettee, M.F., P. E. O'Neil, and J.M. Pierson. 1996. Fishes of Alabama and the Mobile Basin. Oxmoor House, Inc., Birmingham, Alabama. 820 pages.

  • Mirarchi, R. E., J. T. Garner, M. F. Mettee, and P.E. O'Neil, editors. 2004. Alabama wildlife. Volume 2. Imperiled aquatic mollusks and fishes. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 255 pages

  • Mirarchi, R.E., M.A. Bailey, J.T. Garner, T.M. Haggerty, T.L. Best, M.F. Mettee, and P. O'Neil, editors. 2004. Alabama Wildlife. Volume 4. Conservation and management recommendations for imperiled wildlife. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 221 pages.

  • Mirarchi, R.E., editor. 2004. Alabama Wildlife. Volume 1. A checklist of vertebrates and selected invertebrates: aquatic mollusks, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 209 pages.

  • 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.

  • Nelson, J. S., E. J. Crossman, H. Espinosa-Pérez, 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. Sixth edition. American Fisheries Society Special Publication 29. 386 pages.

  • 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.

  • Page, LM, H.Espinoza-Perez, L.Findley, C.Gilbert, R. Lea, N. Mandrak, R.Mayden and J.Nelson. 2013. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico, 7th edition. American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 34, Bethesda, Maryland.

  • 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.

  • Simbeck, D. J. 1990. Distribution of the fishes of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. MS thesis, University of Tennessee, Knoxville. 128 pp.

  • Warren, M. L., Jr., B. M. Burr, S. J. Walsh, H. L. Bart, Jr., R. C. Cashner, D. A. Etnier, B. J. Freeman, B. R. Kuhajda, R. L. Mayden, H. W. Robison, S. T. Ross, and W. C. Starnes. 2000. Diversity, distribution, and conservation status of the native freshwater fishes of the southern United States. Fisheries 25(10):7-31.

References for Watershed Distribution Map
  • Boschung, H. T., and R. L. Mayden. 2004. Fishes of Alabama. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C. 960 pp.

  • Burr, B. M., and M. L. Warren, Jr. 1986a. Distributional atlas of Kentucky fishes. Kentucky Nature Preserves Commission, Scientific and Technical Series No. 4, Frankfort, Kentucky. 398 pp.

  • Etnier, D. A., and W. C. Starnes. 1993. The fishes of Tennessee. University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville, Tennessee. xiv + 681 pp.

  • Jenkins, R. E., and N. M. Burkhead. 1994. Freshwater fishes of Virginia. American Fisheries Society, Bethesda, Maryland. xxiii + 1079 pp.

  • 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.

  • Menhinick, E. F. 1991. The freshwater fishes of North Carolina. North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. 227 pp.

  • Mettee, M. F., P. E. O'Neil, and J. M. Pierson. 1996. Fishes of Alabama and the Mobile Basin. Oxmoor House, Birmingham, Alabama. 820 pp.

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