, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 608–621 | Cite as

Effects of urban land-use on largescale stonerollers in the Mobile River Basin, Birmingham, AL

  • D. Iwanowicz
  • M. C. Black
  • V. S. Blazer
  • H. Zappia
  • W. Bryant


During the spring and fall of 2001 and the spring of 2002 a study was conducted to evaluate the health of the largescale stoneroller (Campostoma oligolepis) populations in streams along an urban land-use gradient. Sites were selected from a pool of naturally similar sub-basins (eco-region, basin size, and geology) of the Mobile River basin (MRB), using an index of urban intensity derived from infrastructure, socioeconomic, and land-use data. This urban land-use gradient (ULUG) is a multimetric indicator of urban intensity, ranging from 0 (background) to 100 (intense urbanization). Campostoma sp. have been used previously as indicators of stream health and are common species found in all sites within the MRB. Endpoints used to determine the effects of urban land-use on the largescale stoneroller included total glutathione, histology, hepatic apoptosis, condition factor and external lesions. Liver glutathione levels were positively associated with increasing urban land-use (r2 = 0.94). Histopathological examination determined that some abnormalities and lesions were correlated with the ULUG and generally increased in prevalence or severity with increasing urbanization. Liver macrophage aggregates were positively correlated to the ULUG. The occurrence of nucleosomal ladders (indicating apoptotic cell death) did not correspond with urban intensity in a linear fashion. Apoptosis, as well as prevalence and severity of a myxozoan parasite, appeared to have a hormetic dose–response relationship. The majority of the biomarkers suggested fish health was compromised in areas where the ULUG ≥ 36.


Biomarkers Largescale stoneroller Campostoma Liver glutathione Urban land-use gradient (ULUG) 



The authors are grateful to Beth Frankenberry, Brian Caskey, Sue Hartley, Kristin Justice, Wyman Turner and Sandy Page for help in collecting the largescale stonerollers for our research. We would also like to thank Dr. Mark Myers, Dr. Jack Fournie, Bane Schill, and Dr. Christine Densmore for critical review of the draft manuscript. Any use of trade, product, or firm names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Iwanowicz
    • 1
  • M. C. Black
    • 2
  • V. S. Blazer
    • 1
  • H. Zappia
    • 3
  • W. Bryant
    • 4
  1. 1.U.S. Geological SurveyNational Fish Health Research LaboratoryKearneysvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Environmental Health ScienceUniversity of GeorgiaAthensUSA
  3. 3.Center for Threat PreparednessGivenUSA
  4. 4.CK Associates Environmental ConsultantsBaton RougeUSA

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