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NCDWR Stream Fish Community Assessment Program : NCIBI Scores and Ratings


The North Carolina Index of Biotic Integrity (NCIBI) is continually being refined for greater applicability to wadeable streams in North Carolina. Currently, the NCIBI is applicable only to streams that are wadeable from one shoreline across to the other and for a distance of 600 feet. The NICIBI is only applicable to wadeable streams in the Western and Northern Mountains (French Broad, Hiwassee, Little Tennessee, New, and Watauga River basins), the Inner Piedmont, Foothills, and Eastern Mountains (Broad, Catawba, Savannah, and Yadkin River basins); and the Outer Piedmont (Cape Fear, Neuse, Roanoke, and Tar River basins).

The Index is undergoing revisions for the Upper Coastal Plain (Chowan, Neuse, Pasquotank, Roanoke, Tar, and White Oak River basins), the Lower Coastal Plain (Cape Fear and Lumber River basins), and the Sandhills (Cape Fear, Lumber, and Yadkin River basins).

Since 1990 more than 930 sites across the state have been assessed by the wadeable stream fish community assessment program (see map). A majority of the sites are within the Piedmont; the fewest sites are from the Outer Coastal Plain where wadeable freshwater streams are uncommon. Most of the sites are located at bridge crossings or other public accesses. First order creeks and nonwadeable rivers, estuaries, and reservoirs are not monitored. The program compliments other NC DWR programs such as the Benthic Macroinvertebrate and the Ambient Monitoring programs.

Numerous requests are received from state and federal agencies, private consultants, and academic institutions regarding the NCIBI scores and ratings of fish communities. These data may be found in the Excel spreadsheet files listed to the left and include fish surveys through December 31, 2012. All data were collected according to  Standard Collection Methods.  The NCIBI score and ratings criteria  were derived from regional reference sites.

Contact Bryn Tracy at 919.743.8474 or bryn.tracy@ncdenr.gov for questions of information concerning fish community assessments.

Updated: 3/14


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Water Sciences Section 1621 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699-1621 919.743.8400

 

 

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