Sport Fisheries Exploitation in Riverine Sections of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway

Principal fisheries in riverine sections of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway below Aberdeen and Columbus dams are associated with tailwaters and bendways (original Tombigbee River channels cut off by the construction of navigation channels). Navigation channels contributed little to the fisheries. Approximately 80% of the anglers interviewed originated their trip from within the county where the respective dam was located. Blue catfish (lctalurus furcatus) dominated the harvest from the Aberdeen system while white crappie (Pomoxis annularis) dominated the harvest from the Columbus system. In the Aberdeen tailwater, catfish anglers prevailed while in the Columbus tailwater, anglers fished for crappie as welI as catfish. In both systems, most anglers in bendways were fishing for crappie. Within navigation channels, no pattern was apparent regarding fish preference by anglers. As the waterway matures and if access to bendways declines as a result of siltation, the riverine section fisheries, especially those associated with tailwaters, will likely become increasingly dominated by catfish fisheries.

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ID
7817