2006 NANFA National Convention, Cape Girardeau, Mo, September 14-18

You are invited to attend the 2006 NANFA Convention in Cape Girardeau, MO on Thursday, September 14th through Monday, September 18th. The NANFA Convention is a great way to get together with other fish enthusiasts, welcome new ones, and also support the organization.

Field Trips

We have some great field trips planned that everyone will enjoy, including the Mississippi River, Black River (Ozarks) and the Mingo Basin Lowlands. These trips will offer an experience not seen before by many native fish enthusiasts: a trip to the big river (the Mississippi) aboard a Corps of Engineers barge; trawling demonstrations to see big river fish that I'll bet most of you have never seen; canoe trips into an Ozarkian river where capturing/collecting 60 fish species is very possible; and collecting deep in a wilderness in a remnant lowland area where we just recently completed a survey and captured 70 fish species, numerous amphibians, and many state listed rare fishes.

And just so you know, the Cape lies within 1-hour of 90% of Missouri's fish diversity -- that's over 200 species!

Click here to download a PowerPoint file (1.8 mb) with photos of the collecting locations and some of the fishes you'll likely see. Click here to download a PDF version (1.8 mb).

As for collecting, attendees will not be required to obtain a permit or purchase a fishing license if they stay with the group on the three collecting trips. If attendees wish to collect outside of the trips (on their own), they will have to purchase an appropriate Missouri fishing license to obtain "baitfish." Under Missouri regulations, the fishing permit allows the take of 150 non-game fish, crayfish, and shrimp (in the aggregate). (Of course, you cannot have state-listed fish and game fish in your possession.)

Yes, it's true: Missouri law forbids the transport of baitfish out of the state. But that won't be a problem if you attend the convention. Contact Bob Hrabik (see below) for details.

In short, the 2006 NANFA Convention represents a unique opportunity for native fish enthusiasts to legally collect and take home many of Missouri's wonderful minnows, darters and other nongame fishes.

Some of the fascinating fish you may encounter (click for larger pic)

Sturgeon Chub

Dollar Sunfish

Sicklefin Chub

Remember, September in southeastern Missouri is usually a sunny and warm month, but fall rains can set in so make sure you are equipped for any occasion.

Conference registration includes main course or evening meals, but for the field trips consider purchasing box lunches for $7.50 each. Please let us know ahead of time if you would like to have a box lunch.


The Convention will be held at the Victoria Inn & Suites with the presentations and banquet in the Lewis and Clark room of the Plaza Conference Center (walking distance from Victoria Inn). We will also have a Hospitality Room available for everyone to gather, visit, meet new people, and get acquainted again with old friends. The Victorian Inn is located just off Interstate Highway 55 and Route K in Cape Girardeau. Sixty rooms have been reserved until August 21, 2006. Room rate is $79/night and will sleep up to 5 people. To reserve a room, call either 1-800-331-0445 or 573-651-4486. Tell them you are with NANFA. The hotel offers complimentary continental breakfast, indoor pool, whirlpool, fitness room, and recreation area/game rooms. Several restaurants are within walking distance and include Cracker Barrel, Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Ruby Tuesdays, and several others.


Registration is $75. Students and spouse registration is $35. Registration checks should be made payable to NANFA and mailed to NANFA, 1107 Argonne Drive, Baltimore, MD 21218.
Payment may also be made on-line with your credit card via PayPal.


  • Thursday: arrival and registration.
  • Friday: registration and field trip.
  • Saturday: paper and poster sessions, banquet and auction.
  • Sunday and Monday: field trips.
Details about the schedule will be sent to those who register.

Speakers and Presentations

Thursday Night: A.J. Hendershott 8:00-9:00 pm
Shaping a State: Elements and Engineering.

Friday: Corp of Engineers presentations aboard the MVS Pathfinder (TBA).

Saturday: Paper and Poster Sessions.

    8:30 am
    Robert Hrabik (Missouri Department of Conservation):
    Welcome, opening remarks, and a primer on the fishes of southeastern Missouri.

    8:45 am
    Jeremy Tiemann (Illinois Natural History Survey):
    Damn those dams -- their effects on stream ecosystems.

    9:10 am
    Dr. Ray Bauer (Dept. of Biology, University of Louisiana at Lafayette):
    From the river to the coast and back again: Reproductive migrations of the river shrimp Macrobrachim ohione.

    9:35 am
    Nick Lang (St. Louis University, MO)
    Hybridization in darters: field observations, genetic investigation, and how to play God in your home aquarium.

    10:00 am
    Aaron Schrey and Ed Heist (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale)
    Genetic discrimination of pallid and shovelnose sturgeons.

10:25 am -- Break

    10:35 am
    Todd Crail (University of Toledo, OH)
    A simple headwater sampling design for amateurs (That the professionals will want to use too).

    11:00 am
    Christopher Scharpf (NANFA, Baltimore, MD)
    Rated NC-17: madtom Sex in the aquarium.

    11:25 am
    Dr. David Neely (St. Louis University), James E. Brooks, Hector Espinosa, Francisco Garcia de Leon, Dean A. Hendrickson, Bernard R. Kuhajda, Richard L. Mayden, David L. Propst, Joseph R. Tomelleri, and Alejandro Varela Romero.
    Los Pecados Montanas: high-elevation biodiversity in the Sierra Madre Occidental of Mexico.

    11:50 am
    Dr. Phil Cochran, William Martin, and Bridgett Emmett (St. Mary's University, Winona, MN).
    History fish: time traveling with the lake sturgeon in the upper Midwest.

12:15 pm -- Lunch

    1:45 pm
    Brad Pobst (Missouri Department of Conservation) and Bruce Moyer (University of Central Arkansas)
    Population dynamics of grotto sculpin (Cottus carolinae) in Perry County, Missouri.

    2:10 pm
    Chris Kennedy (Missouri Department of Conservation)
    The Alligator Gar in Missouri, facts and fiction.

    2:35 pm
    Wayne Heaton (Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center)
    Maintaining outside aquaria Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center.

    3:00 pm
    Dr. Ginny Adams (Universtiy of Central Arkansas)
    Distribution and status of spring cavefish in Missouri.

    3:25 pm
    Dr. Rex Strange (Universtiy of Southern Indiana)
    Habitat affinities and visual systems in darters and other percid fishes.

    3:50 pm
    Mike Bessert (University of Nebraska)
    Only one haplotype left in Nebraska? -- Conservation genetics of the plains topminnow (Fundulus sciadicus).

    4:15 pm
    Dr. Brooks M. Burr (Southern Illinois University), Larry M. Page, and Justin Sipiorski
    Peterson Field Guide to Freshwater Fishes, 2nd edition: what it tells us about fish diversity.

4:35 pm -- POSTERS. Authors available until approximately 5:00 pm.

    Todd Crail (University of Toledo, Ohio) and Jeff Grabarkiewicz
    The Travellin' Fish Show

    Jeremy S. Tiemann (Illinois Natural History Survey)
    Reproductive behavior of Pimephales.

    Dr. Douglas C. Novinger and John W. Calfee (Missouri Dept. of Conservation)
    Topeka shiners in Moniteau Creek: monitoring fish, habitat, and water quality.

    Dr. Douglas C. Novinger and John W. Calfee (Missouri Dept. of Conservation)
    Monitoring Niangua darter populations, fish community, and habitat relationships.

    Dr. Douglas C. Novinger and John W. Calfee (Missouri Dept. of Conservation)
    Monitoring Neosho madtom populations, habitat, and fish community relationships in the Spring River, MO.

    Brian Zimmerman (Bowling Green State University, Ohio)
    Seasonal changes in the micro-habitat requirements of the redside dace (Clinostomus elongatus).

    Andrew Plauck (USFWS, Columbia, MO)
    Trawling the big muddy (video).

    J.G. Stewart (1), V.A. Barko (2), D.P. Herzog (2), D.B. Henry (3), J.W. Ridings (2), A.F. Kelley (2), and J.E. Wallace (2) (1 - So. Illinois Univ. Carbondale; 2 - Missouri Dept. of Conservation; 3 - Three Rivers Environmental Assessments, Murphysboro, IL).
    New records of the Crystal Darter (Crystallaria asprella) in the Middle Mississippi River.

    David P. Herzog, Valerie A. Barko, David E. Ostendorf, Joseph W. Ridings, James E. Wallace, Jason W. Crites and Robert A. Hrabik (Missouri Dept. of Conservation
    The Mini-Missouri Trawl: A useful methodology for sampling small-bodies fishes in small river systems.

    Jennifer L. Johnson (1,3), Diana M. Papoulias (2), David L. Galat (2,3) (1 and 3 - USFWS, Columbia, MO; 2 - USGS-CERC, Columbia, MO; 2 and 3 - USGS-CFWRU Univ. of MO, Columbia, MO)
    Reproductive development of the sicklefin chub (Macrhybopsis meeki) in the Lower Missouri River.
    Reproductive development of Missouri River chubs in relation to environmental variables.

    Andrew Starostka and Wyatt Doyle (USFWS, Columbia, MO)
    Dispersal of hatchery reared pallid sturgeon from a stocking site on the Lower Missouri River

Banquet Speaker:

    Bob Muller (Royal Oak Nature Society, MI)
    Fun with bait and road gravel.

No Sunday presentations.

Monday: (Field trip to Mingo National Wildlife Refuge)
Mingo NWR staff (Mingo NWR, Puxico, MO) History of Mingo NWR: Ecosystem restoration.


The t-shirt for this year’s convention will feature two of Missouri's rarest fishes (Alligator Gar and Golden Topminnow). Dave Neely and Casper Cox are the designers.

T-Shirt Images: Front, Back


Cape Girardeau, Where the River Turns A Thousand Tales, offers wonderful opportunities for leisure activities before, after, and between the convention that include spectacular natural vistas, wide variety of shopping experiences, site-seeing opportunities, a historic past, and much more. A packet of information about Cape Girardeau will be available at registration.

Getting Here

Cape Girardeau Regional Airport offers daily flight connections to St. Louis. Cape Girardeau is centrally located at Interstate 55 between St. Louis and Memphis. We’re also an easy auto commute from a myriad of Midwest locations.

Questions? Contact:

Bob Hrabik or Suzanne Speer
573-243-2659, ext. 22.