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Distribution and Dispersal of Fishes
in the Red River Basin

Hiodontidae -- The Mooneye Family


The mooneye (Hiodon tergisus Lesueur) was collected by Woolman (1896) from the Red River at Moorhead and Grand Forks, and from the Red Lake River at Crookston, where it was common to abundant in the samples (Fig. A5). It was reported by Eigenmann (1895) from the Red River at Winnipeg, and by Cox (1897) in the northern part of Minnesota, where it was common. Evermann and Latimer (1910) described mooneye as less common than H. alosoides, the goldeye, in the Lake of the Woods. Since 1962, the mooneye was reported from the Red (9,13,19) and Red Lake (18) rivers, and from the lower reaches of the Pembina (2), and Sheyenne(12) rivers in North Dakota, and from the Otter Tail (9) and Wild Rice rivers in Minnesota (1,9). The mooneye occurred in 5% of stream sites sampled in the Red River basin since 1962, and at 11% of the sites sampled in the Red River Valley ecoregion. The mooneye is less abundant in site collections than the goldeye; most samples contained 1-7 individuals, compared with 1-85 for goldeyes (9,19). The mooneye is usually found in large rivers with low turbidity, and are less tolerant of silted habitats than are goldeye (Becker 1983).

The range of the mooneye extends from the Hudson and James bay drainages in Canada south through the Great Lakes basin and the Mississippi river to the Gulf of Mexico (Lee et al. 1980). In Canada the mooneye is present in the Saskatchewan, Assiniboine, Souris, Red, English, Winnipeg, and Nelson rivers (Crossman and McAllister 1986). In Minnesota, the mooneye occurs in the Minnesota River and Rainy River/Lake of the Woods, but is absent in the upper Mississippi River (Underhill 1989). In the Dakotas, it is absent in the Missouri River drainage in North Dakota (Ryckman 1981), and was not reported in South Dakota (Bailey and Allum 1962).

GIF-Mooneye Distribution, 1892-1994

Maps by Period

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