Gregory W. Whitledge | Zoology Program | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Agriculture, Life and Physical Sciences

Gregory W. Whitledge



Office: 175 Life Science II
Phone: 618-453-6089

My research interests include applications of stable isotopes in fisheries and aquatic sciences, fish bioenergetics and trophic interactions, fish-habitat relationships, aquatic invasive species, and sport fisheries management.  Current and recent research projects in my lab include several applications of otolith and fin ray/spine chemistry as indicators of fish environmental history.  These studies are currently focused on fishes in large Midwestern rivers (Asian carps, sturgeon, catfishes, paddlefish, sauger), but also include smaller rivers and streams.  We are also using otolith and fin ray chemistry to assess contributions of stocking and natural reproduction to Lake Michigan lake trout (in collaboration with the IL Natural History Survey) and reservoir crappie and smallmouth bass populations.  My lab group conducts long-term electrofishing monitoring of Ohio River fish assemblages and sport fish management studies in southern Illinois, with current emphasis on population dynamics of Ohio River catfishes and spotted bass in southern Illinois streams.  Other ongoing and recent projects include an assessment of ploidy status, age and growth, and environmental history of grass carp in the Great Lakes region and black carp in the Mississippi River (in collaboration with USGS), movement of Asian carp around locks and dams, and field evaluation of Zequanox® for zebra mussel control in lakes.  We also conduct surveillance for viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) in Illinois waters.


Ph.D., University of Missouri, Columbia

Courses taught

ZOOL 569 (Advanced Fish Management), ZOOL 540 (Stable Isotopes in Ecology), ZOOL 466 (Fisheries Management)

Areas of interest

Fish ecology and fish management

Selected Recent Publications

Bouska, K.L., G.W. Whitledge, and C. Lant. In press. Development and evaluation of species distribution models for fourteen native central U.S. fish species.  Hydrobiologia. DOI: 10.1007/s10750-014-2134-8

Whitledge, G.W., M.M. Weber, J. DeMartini, J. Oldenburg, D. Roberts, C. Link,  S.M. Rackl, N.P. Rude, A.J. Yung, L.R. Bock, and D.C. Oliver.  In press. An evaluation of Zequanox® efficacy and application strategies for targeted control of zebra mussels in shallow-water habitats in lakes. Management of Biological Invasions.

Young, M.P., G.W. Whitledge, and J.T. Trushenski.  In press.  Fatty acid profiles distinguish channel catfish from three reaches of the lower Kaskaskia River and its floodplain lakes.  River Research and Applications.  DOI: 10.1002/rra.2856

Young, M.P., G.W. Whitledge, and J.T. Trushenski.  2014.  Changes in fatty acid profiles of three tissue types in channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus transferred from river to pond environments.  Journal of Applied Ichthyology 30:895-905.

Rude, N.P., K.T. Smith, and G.W. Whitledge.  2014.  Identification of stocked muskellunge and potential for distinguishing hatchery-origin and wild fish using pelvic fin ray microchemistry.  Fisheries Management and Ecology 21:312-321.

Wittmann, M.E., C.L. Jerde, J.G. Howeth, S.P. Maher, A.M. Deines, J.A. Jenkins, G.W. Whitledge, S.R. Burbank, W.L. Chadderton, A.R. Mahon, J.T. Tyson, C.A. Gantz, R.P. Keller, J.M. Drake and D.M. Lodge.  2014.  Grass carp in the Great Lakes region: establishment potential, expert perceptions, and re-evaluation of experimental evidence of ecological impact.  Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 71:992-999.

Bouska, K.L. and G.W. Whitledge.  2014.  Habitat associations of fish assemblages in the Cache River, Illinois.  Environmental Biology of Fishes 97:27-42.

Rude, N.P., W.D. Hintz, J.D. Norman, K.L. Kanczuzewski, A.J. Yung, K.D. Hofer, and G.W. Whitledge.  2013.  Using pectoral fin rays as a non-lethal aging structure for smallmouth bass: precision with otolith age estimates and the importance of reader experience.  Journal of Freshwater Ecology 28:199-210.

Phelps, Q.E., G.W. Whitledge, S.J. Tripp, K.T. Smith, J.E. Garvey, D.P. Herzog, D.E. Ostendorf, J.W. Ridings, J.W. Crites, R.A. Hrabik, W.J. Doyle, and T.D. Hill.  2012.  Identifying river of origin for age-0 Scaphirhynchus sturgeons in the Missouri and Mississippi rivers using fin ray microchemistry.  Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 69:930-941.

Gahagan, B.I., J.C. Vokoun, G.W. Whitledge, and E.T. Schultz.  2012.  Evaluation of otolith microchemistry for identifying natal origin of anadromous river herring in Connecticut.  Marine and Coastal Fisheries 4:358-372.

Myers, D.J., G.W. Whitledge, and M.R. Whiles.  2012.  Evaluation of δD and δ18O as natural markers of invertebrate source environment and dispersal in the middle Mississippi River-floodplain ecosystem.  River Research and Applications 28:135-142.

Rude, N.P., G.W. Whitledge, Q.E. Phelps, and S. Hirst.  2011.  Long-term PIT and T-bar anchor tag retention rates in adult muskellunge.  North American Journal of Fisheries Management 31:515-519.

Smith, K.T., N.P. Rude, M.R. Noatch, D.R. Sechler, Q.E. Phelps, and G.W. Whitledge.  2011.  Contrasting population characteristics of yellow bass (Morone mississippiensis) in two southern Illinois reservoirs.  Journal of Applied Ichthyology 27:46-52.

Whitledge, G.W., P.G. Bajer, and R.S. Hayward.  2010.  Laboratory evaluation of two bioenergetics models for brown trout.  Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 139:929-936.

Whitledge, G.W., C.F. Rabeni, G. Annis, and S.P. Sowa.  2006.  Riparian shading and groundwater enhance growth potential for smallmouth bass in Ozark streams.  Ecological Applications 16:1461-1473.

For more information on my research program, please see my lab webpage.