US Forest Service Research & Development
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  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Anne Timm

1831 Hwy. 169 E.
Grand Rapids, MN 55744-3399
Phone: 218-326-7132
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Current Research

The goal of my doctoral research is to evaluate genetic tools as biological indicators of barrier effects on brook trout populations in fragmented subwatersheds. Natural resource agency personnel can use these tools to appropriately develop long-term monitoring programs and to achieve realistic brook trout population management goals in relation to the relative amount of fragmentation within a given subwatershed. The primary objective of my research is to establish indicators of reduced genetic diversity for brook trout populations in fragmented subwatersheds that can be associated with barriers.

Proposed Dissertation Chapter/ Publication Titles:

  • Effect of the frequency of barriers on brook trout population differentiation at the subwatershed scale.
  • The distribution of brook trout effective population size in relation to subwatershed fragmentation.
  • Kinship relationships of populations associated with natural barriers in fragmented subwatersheds.
  • Why This Research is Important

    Natural barriers to aquatic species movement, such as waterfalls and cascades, occur within stream systems and can cause aquatic habitat fragmentation by reducing the amount of available habitat to populations below or above the barrier. In addition, dams and other human-constructed stream-crossing structures result in further aquatic habitat fragmentation if stream channel functions such as flow, processing of sediment, and movement of large wood are not maintained. It is estimated that there are 75,000 dams greater than 6 feet high and 2.5 million other barriers to fish movement in the United States (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 2006).

    Brook trout is the native trout species of the eastern United States. Intact brook trout populations exist in only 5% of subwatersheds within their native range (Hudy et al. 2006) as the result of population declines. Brook trout populations that are isolated by barriers are especially at risk due to a loss of gene flow with other native populations. Genetic baseline information for trout populations, which needs to be sampled only once, incorporates multi-generational effects of barriers and could function as a biological monitoring tool for stream systems to document changes over longer time periods. The brook trout is an appropriate indicator species for a study of genetic effects of barriers because genetic marker information is well established, and long-term, genetic information exists that can be applied at broad spatial and temporal scales.


    • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Ph.D. Fisheries and Wildlife, 2009
    • Indiana University, Environmental Science - Aquatic Habitat Analysis ,
    • Luther College, B.A. Biology,

    Professional Organizations

    • American Fisheries Society
    • North American Native Fishes Association
    • American Society of Ichthyology and Herpetology
    • Graduate Women in Science

    Last updated on : 05/04/2012