Great Basin Naturalist


The distributions of Cottus bairdi, C. rhotheus, and C. beldingi exhibited a highly significant positive degree of association. Conversely, the distribution of C. confusus exhibited a highly significant negative association with the distributional complex, C. bairdi, C. rhotheus, and C. beldingi. These species of sculpins can be grouped into two assemblages; one based on the distribution of C. confusus and the other based on the combined distributions of the other three species. The factor or factors limiting the downstream distribution of C. confusus or the upstream distribution of the other three species could not be positively identified. However, we hypothesize that competition between C. confusus and one or more members of the C. bairdi, C. rhotheus and C. beldingi complex is involved. In the area of overlapping distributions among C. bairdi, C. rhotheus, and C. bairdi we hypothesize that resource partitioning is occurring. However, the data did not allow evaluation of this hypothesis.