Origin and distribution of the fish fauna of the Harney Basin, Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/zw12z7347

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  • A theory of the origin and distribution of fishes in the Harney Basin is presented. Blitzen River, the hydrographically and ecologically isolated creeks, and the upland tributaries of Silvies River all contain populations derived from the basin's Pleistocene connection with Malheur River of the Snake system. Colonization of many streams took Place during periods of high precipitation; isolation has resulted froth dessicating trends since the last glaciation. Stream capture has apparently facilitated a secondary invasion of fishes into Silvies River from John Day River, a tributary of the lower Columbia. This conclusion is further supported by the presence of several species only in central Silvies River within the basin. Certain populations similar to those occurring in isolated regions of the Harney Basin also exist above the barrier falls of the south fork of John Day River, but this drainage is believed to be another disrupted fragment containing descendants of a more ancient Columbia fauna. Speculation regarding the sequence of radiation of different species throughout the Columbia watershed is aided by distributional patterns and knowledge of hydrographic history.
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