Wrapping up the 2020 Field Season

October 31st saw an end to the 2020 field season for most of our projects. To say 2020 proposed new challenges would be an understatement! Out of our Havana station, our various projects took us along the entire 270+ mile stretch of the Illinois River, from the outskirts of Chicago to its confluence with the Mississippi in Graton, Illinois, as well as 6 pools of the Mississippi River from Muscatine, IA to Quincy, IL (~132 river miles). In addition, our Black Carp team helped IDNR and USGS in sampling efforts below L&D 26 on the Open River portion of the Mississippi, catching a 45lb individual!

While activity winds down in Havana, our Yorkville crew continues their partnership with the IDNR in Asian carp harvest and control efforts on the Upper Illinois River. Our Upper Mississippi River team is also out partnering with commercial fishermen on Pools 14-19 of Mississippi to harvest Asian carp at the leading edge of their invasion.

2020 field techs
2020 Aquatic Field Technicians (Photo Credit: IRBS Staff)

Throughout the summer, we employed 19 technicians and 5 graduate students, along with 17 full-time staff at our Havana, Yorkville, and Upper Mississippi River locations. We are grateful for a strong year class of technicians and graduate students, without whom we wouldn’t have been able to complete our work. While some will be sticking around our pool of the river for a while longer, others are off to explore new waters. We wish them all well, wherever the flow takes them!

Post written by Kris Maxson