2013 Annual Meeting Minutes

February 7, 2013
Southern Division AFS Reservoir Committee Meeting
Sheraton Downtown, Nashville, TN
9:10am – 12:05pm; 1:20pm – 4:40pm
Recorded and submitted by Chad Holbrook, Secretary/Treasurer (South Carolina DNR

 Reservoir committee (RC) chair Kurt Kuklinski called the meeting to order, welcomed all attendees, and requested an updated list of email addresses from the attendees.  Kuklinski presented Michael Abney with a plaque of appreciation for his six years of service as the secretary/treasurer and introduced Chad Holbrook as the incoming secretary/treasurer.

Financial Report – Michael Abney presented, and passed around summary, current financial standing of $19,059 in Edward Jones investment account at end of 2012. Abney noted that all RC monies are still consolidated into a single account with Edward Jones. He mentioned we were able to cover two $1,000 scholarships and the meeting costs from 2011 and have about the same amount in the account as we did at the end of 2011.  The yearly performance of the account offset the yearly expenses.  Abney reminded the membership not to expect similar performances every year.

Scholarship Report – Neal Jackson reported there were three new applicants for scholarships and two were chosen: 1) Kristopher Stahr (Oklahoma State University), PhD. dissertation – Factors related to stocking success of 178-mm channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus in medium size reservoirs in Oklahoma and 2) David Stewart (Oklahoma State University), M.S. thesis – The role of aquatic macrophytes and turbidity in mediating juvenile largemouth bass survival.

Neal brought up an interest in increasing the applicant pool.  Suggestions were made to advertise the scholarships in the SDAFS winter newsletter, and also to send emails to professor’s who typically have students working on reservoir fisheries research projects.

Finances – The discussion returned to the finances of the committee and ideas for making money in the future.  Gene Gilliland brought up reservoir symposium book sales.  Dan Michaelson commented on the small impoundment committee’s new book and that AFS paid for the book and the small impoundment committee would not make any money from book sales.  Rick Ott suggested making the book available electronically and to charge for downloads, and Mike Allen stated that in the near future all AFS books are going to be available electronically as a whole book or by chapters.  Neal Jackson suggested running a workshop at a future SD-AFS meeting.  Kuklinski and Jeff Boxrucker began a group discussion on presenting the habitat manual currently being drafted at a symposium and possibly having the symposium podcast.  A copy of the habitat manual would be provided with registration.

Habitat Manual – Kuklinski changed gears to discuss the updated habitat manual and how to introduce it to interested user groups.  A webinar was suggested as an alternative to hosting a symposium.

The priority for the 2013 summer meeting will be how to roll out the updated habitat manual.  Fred Heitman suggested that the habitat manual be linked to the reservoir committee’s website and that if the site begins to see increased traffic that we could look into selling advertising to vendors that have direct products referenced in the habitat manual.  Rick Ott suggested advertising on the RC web site as a funding source. Jimmy White (TX) has helped update the website.

2012 Summer Meeting Review – Kuklinski commented on the good attendance at the summer meeting, ~15 participants.  The goals from the meeting were to provide a habitat manual for district and regional biologist.  Kuklinski requested that information regarding individual state’s habitat plans be compiled, and he reminded the membership to look outside of our own agencies for these plans (e.g. Department of Environmental Quality or Army Corps of Engineers)

As an example of a statewide plan, Kuklinski spoke about a regional biologist in Oklahoma who is working on a species specific plan for habitat enhancement projects.  He added that reservoir committee members may be contacted about any similar work that is ongoing in their states.

Kuklinski and Jeff Boxrucker asked members to send “in kind” support hours/relative cost from each member’s work on habitat manual. 

2013 Summer Meeting – A few ideas for a location were brought up: Dale Hollow Lake, TN (houseboat); Kentucky Lake (youth camp), Brandon Springs on Land Between the Lakes, and Kuklinski offered up a return visit to the research station on Lake Texoma.  No definitive decisions were made.

10:22 AM break

10:40 AM return from break

SDAFS President-elect Mike Allen gave an update from SDAFS and proposed that technical committee appointments be for 2 years instead of 1 year.

Jeff Boxrucker officially welcomed Larry Olmstead (retired Duke Energy and past SD-AFS President) to the meeting.

Mike Allen (Missouri) gave a presentation on a habitat enhancement project that is ongoing in Table Rock Lake, Missouri.

12:05 PM break for lunch

1:20 PM return from lunch

Mark Porath (Nebraska) gave a presentation entitled “Rehabilitating Nebraska’s Aging Reservoirs”

Mike McGhee (Iowa) gave a presentation entitled “Lake Restoration in Iowa”

Dave Terre (Texas) gave an update on NFHAP and a presentation entitled “Friends of Reservoirs Foundation” a Plan for Building and Growing Capacity to Improve Fish Habitat in our Nations Reservoirs

A motion was made to appoint a committee to put together a Habitat Workshop.  John Taylor volunteered to help make the manual web-based, and Dave Terre volunteered to help coordinate a workshop.

All committee volunteers:
Kurt Kuklinski
Dan Shoup
John Taylor
Shane Bush
Dave Terre.

The goal of the committee is to evaluate running a workshop at the 2015 SDAFS meeting and if the workshop is successful to also present the workshop at the parent society meeting in 2016 in Kansas City.

4:40 PM call to adjourn

Kurt Kuklinski Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Stephen Brown Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks
Matt Schroeder Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Jim Hendrick West Virginia Department of Natural Resources
Mike McGhee Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Mark Porath Nebraska Game and Parks Commission
Fred Heitman Enercon Services
Mark Oliver Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Kevin Hopkins Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Dan Michaelson Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
Dave Terre Texas Park and Wildlife Department
Barry Bolton Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Jeff Boxrucker Reservoir Partnership
Steve Miranda Mississippi Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Unit
Neal Jackson Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources
Gene Gilliland Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Mike Allen Missouri Department of Conservation
Shane Bush Missouri Department of Conservation
Mike Siepker Missouri Department of Conservation
D. Colton Dennis Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Kristopher Stahr Oklahoma State University
Todd St.John Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency
Nathan Singer Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency
Rick Ott Texas Park and Wildlife Department
Jason Schooley Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Michael Abney Duke Energy
Chad Holbrook South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
Tim Bonvechio Georgia Department of Natural Resources
John Taylor Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Dan Shoup Oklahoma State University
Chuck Coutant

2012 Reservoir Committee Summer Meeting Dates and Details

I have worked out the dates and some details for our summer 2012 meeting at Lake Texoma, Oklahoma/Texas. We will meet July 10-12 at the University of Oklahoma Biological Station on the shore of Lake Texoma. This facility will provide reasonable lodging ($26.30/night, you bring bedding and towels) and cafeteria food on site ($25.50/day for 3 meals). Airline travel to the meeting can be booked through either Oklahoma City or Dallas/Ft. Worth with about equal travel to the lake from each airport (roughly 2 hours). I will do my best to provide ground transport to and from OKC airport as flight arrivals allow. Perhaps something can be worked out on the Texas side as well. Otherwise, car rental for a group should be reasonable.

At the moment, I am working on an agenda, but the main focus of our work will be the re-writing/updating of the old ResCom habitat manual. We may try to bring in an expert in the field of reservoir habitat to assist/enlighten us. The final agenda will be available in the coming weeks as details are ironed out.

In addition to our habitat manual work, the location provides us with the opportunity to take in some quality striped bass fishing. A topwater bite is likely for that time of the year and time will be allowed to partake in the local angling opportunities.

More details will follow. I just wanted to get the dates out there to you all so plans can begin to be made. I hope to see many of you this summer, and I’ll be sending more information soon.

Kurt Kuklinski

2012 Annual Meeting Minutes

January 26, 2012
Southern Division AFS Reservoir Committee Meeting
Biloxi, MS
9:20am – 12:00am; 2:00pm – 4:35pm
Recorded and submitted by Michael A. Abney, Secretary/Auditor (Duke Energy)

Reservoir Committee (RC) Chair Steve Sammons called the meeting to order and recognized the good attendance in light of traveling restrictions. There was a summer 2011 meeting in Warm Springs, GA focusing on habitat mapping with side-scan sonar including actual collection of data and analysis of those data. We hope for a summer 2012 meeting at Lake Texoma at the University of Oklahoma Biological Station. He also provided a few copies for review of our unit report to SD-AFS.

Sammons also recognized the really good meeting held in Tampa, FL and mentioned that the minutes are available online at the RC website. He asked for approval of the minutes. Motion: Joe Slaughter, Second: Mike Allen

Financial Report – Michael Abney presented, and passed around summary, current financial standing of $19,560 in Edward Jones investment account at end of 2011. Abney noted that all RC monies are still consolidated into a single account with Edward Jones. He mentioned the downward slope of our financial account over the years and the typical annual expenses of

$2,500 – $3,000. Our current trend is not sustainable, although it’s also not grave at this point. Sammons asked that the committee members think about ways to improve funding in future years and opened the floor for discussion.

Larry Pugh asked if holding a workshop at the SD-AFS meetings and charging $40 a person would be possible. The Catfish Committee currently does that. Pugh later added that state funding may be more available if travel is for education/training. Allen later mentioned that the SD-AFS excom is looking into standardizing workshops and distribution of money. Currently, organization, cost, and profits are determined by the workshop organizer.

Slaughter mentioned that corporate funding sponsorship might be more readily available for educational purposes such as a workshop relative to just funding a meeting. Abney later concurred that Duke Energy is cutting meeting sponsorship, but that educational courses may provide a funding avenue.

Kurt Kuklinski asked if symposia, similar to the 2007 reservoir symposium in Atlanta, were even viable these days. Sammons will look into how much money was made from book sales from the 1995 symposium in Chattanooga. The resulting book is sold out and no longer available from AFS. Jeff Boxrucker added that AFS publishing costs these days prevents making a substantial profit on the books. Abney mentioned that book sale profits from the 1983 symposium is minimal (~$30/year) and that we see no profits from the 2007 symposium as AFS published the book at their cost. Sammons and Boxrucker both suggested that funding these days isn’t really towards reservoirs. Dan Shoup added that the minimal funding that is available is from sportfish restoration.

Discussion moved towards organizing a workshop at the 2013 meeting in Nashville, TN. Kuklinski said that a habitat workshop should be received well, but that we need a TN representative to serve as a local organizer. Sammons mentioned the availability of local reservoirs for a field component and the likely inclusion of Adam Keiser with sidescan sonar.

Rick Ott mentioned that links to habitat manual, and links in general, are dead on the RC webpage. Kuklinski said the webpage and document access will be one of his top priorities as Chair. Allen mentioned that original documents may reside with Kim Bonvechio.

Scholarship Committee Report – Kurt Kuklinski reported that 2012 is the second year for our Jenkins Memorial Scholarship winners of $1,000 each. The winners were Jonah Dagel (Mississippi State University) and Ryan Lothrop (Auburn University). We will have two new recipients for 2013. Sammons mentioned that Lothrop is presenting during the meeting.

Old business:

Summer Meeting Recap – Sammons mentioned that there were 18 attendees at the summer meeting and learned about habitat mapping using sidescan sonar. The first day was spent on the water collecting data while day 2 was spent analyzing data in the classroom. Equipment cost is relatively cheap (~$3,800) and analysis is very fast. 1 km of habitat acquisition and analysis takes about 2 hours total.

Slaughter mentioned that he and Thom Litts (GA DNR) will utilize 2 boats to acquire shoreline habitat data from Lake Oconee, GA. They think it will take about 1 week to acquire data and another 2 weeks to analyze data. Many in attendance mentioned the increased use of sidescan sonar for habitat mapping. Sammons said some companies are currently mapping entire reservoirs for commercial sale. The question was asked to Abney whether the DIDSON is a viable means to collect habitat data. He said the cost alone is prohibitive, but that it could be used to obtain high resolution imagery.

Kuklinski said that he was trying to get field crews in OK to incorporate habitat into standard studies, but was meeting with some resistance. A standardized assessment procedure would be a great help. Ott and Neal Jackson agreed that we need consistency within and among states, that there’s too much subjectivity to it. Mark Oliver and Sammons agreed that it might be time to convert talk/presentations of mapping into an actual standard mapping publication. Allen said the process must incorporate reservoir ageing and resulting changes in the fish community.

Reservoir Fisheries Habitat Partnership (RFHP) – Boxrucker began by showing time lapse photography of reservoir headwaters filling in from siltation. Discussion began regarding teaming with fishing groups on reservoirs and educating them on partnering with agencies to go beyond simple projects such as brush piles. Fishing groups also need to realize that water allocation is beyond state agency control and that relicensing (every 30-40 years) is the best avenue for success. The peak of reservoir construction was in the 60’s and has been declining precipitously ever since. Therefore, ageing reservoirs are resulting in decreases in fishing.

Boxrucker noted that the Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership and Steve Miranda found that almost all impairment in reservoirs is due to watershed management. Issues such as thermal pollution rank very low. Insufficient macrophytes are another big issue for southern

Appalachian reservoirs. Future workshops with anglers and the help of Bass Pro Shops and BASS should help educate the public. Their website also offers information: reservoirresearch.org


 New business:

 Website – same question as last year: who can take over as webmaster of RC website with Fred Janssen’s departure? Fred can work with that person over next year prior to handing it over for good. Slaughter, Ott, and Gene Gilliland might have some leads, will check on them and get back to Kuklinski. A short discussion about facebook occurred with Ott mentioning the need for close monitoring. No attendees use facebook regularly.

 Secretary/Treasurer – Sammons announced that Abney will be stepping down as secretary/treasurer at the 2013 Nashville meeting. Lawrence Dorsey will assume the position. The two will transition materials and names on account prior to Nashville.

 Scholarship Committee – With Kuklinski assuming Chair the committee will need new members. Neal Jackson will assume lead with Brent Hess, Chad Holbrook, Ott, and John Odenkirk volunteering as reviewers. They will also contact past recipients of the award for assistance. Members also discussed adding a condition to the award that recipients must be willing to serve as reviewers thereafter.

 Reservoir Partnership reviewers for rating/scoring of proposals will change to Hess, Colton Dennis, and Ott. Pugh may also be able to assist.

Committee chair – Kuklinski was installed as the new chair (2 year term). He presented Sammons with an appreciation of service plaque to applause. Kurt said he would focus on revamping the habitat manual, updating the website, and proposing a workshop for the 2013 SD- AFS meeting.

Striped Bass Committee representative Jim Bulak updated the committee on their goals to develop an accurate pelagic/forage fish condition index, evaluate stocking (genetics) and parental lineages, and analyze genetic risks associated with stocking of hybrid striped bass. Bulak said their new chair is Tim Churchill and that they’ll discuss future collaborations with the RC with Kuklinski.

Summer Meeting – We’re aiming for a July meeting to be held on Lake Texoma at the University of Oklahoma Biological Station. Facilities include dorms, eating hall, and boats.

Round-table discussion ensued with much of focus on blue cat sampling techniques and ageing.

Motion to adjourn at 4:35pm: Sammons; 2nd: Jackson


Steve Sammons Auburn University
Gene Gilliland Oklahoma Department of Wildlife
Dan Shoup (phone) Oklahoma State University
Clint Peacock Georgia Department of Natural Resources
Brent Hess Georgia Department of Natural Resources
Joey Slaughter Georgia Power Company
Rick Ott Texas Parks and Wildlife
Ashley Nealis Oklahoma Department of Wildlife
Kurt Kuklinski Oklahoma Department of Wildlife
Mark Oliver Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Tim Churchill Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency
Jason Schooley Oklahoma Department of Wildlife
David Wellman West Virginia Department of Natural Resources
Chad Holbrook South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
Jeff Boxrucker Reservoir Fisheries Habitat Partnership
Larry Pugh Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks
Jessica Baumann North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
Chris Racey Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Michael Abney Duke Energy
Damon Abernathy Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Dave Terre Texas Parks and Wildlife
Mike Allen University of Florida
Jim Bulak South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
Neal Jackson Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources
Stephen Brown Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks
John Odenkirk Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
Lawrence Dorsey (phone) North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

2012 Meeting Agenda

Reservoir Committee, Southern Division AFS
2012 Annual Meeting, Biloxi, MS
9:00 am, January 26, 2012

[download id=”8″]

  1.  Welcome, Opening Remarks, Introductions
  2. Reading and Approval of 2011 Annual Meeting Minutes
  3. Financial Report
  4. Scholarship Committee Report (K. Kuklinski)
  5. Old Business
    1. Recap of Summer Meeting – Questions? (S. Sammons and A. Kaeser)
    2. Habitat Classification in Reservoirs (S. Sammons)
    3. Update on the Reservoir Habitat Partnership and the RC Involvement (J. Boxrucker)
    4. Collaboration With Striped Bass Committee (J. Bulak)
  6. New Business
    1. RC Website (Life After Freddie)
    2. Secretary/Treasurer Position and Other RC Business (M. Abney, K. Kuklinski)
    3. New RC Chair – K. Kulinski
    4. Summer Meeting
  7. Roundtable Discussion – Issues Faced by RC members
  8. Adjorn

2011 Summer Meeting Information

OK, folks, below are the details for this year’s summer meeting. It looks to be a good one- so make plans to attend. Also, if you think anyone from your agency would benefit from learning the side-scan technique, please bring them. As the meeting gets closer, we will figure out what everyone needs to bring. Right now, I would suggest laptops, and if any of you are GIS-compatible, bring Arcview with you too.

Mapping habitat in reservoirs is a very important topic that is of great interest to both SARP and RFHP, so hopefully we are expecting some support from your chiefs and directors for you to travel to this meeting. This is a one-time chance, after this, you’ll be paying for a workshop like this one. So I hope to see you all in Warm Springs!

Thanks to Joey Slaughter and Brent Hess for working on the local arrangements, and to Adam Kaeser and Thom Litts for lending us their expertise for this workshop!

Please let me know ASAP if you are (or are not) coming and how many you are bringing…


Steven M. Sammons, PhD

SD-AFS Reservoir Committee
2011 Summer Meeting
Warm Springs, GA
July 26-28, 2011


Monday, July 25

Evening Out-of-town attendees arrive in Warm Springs, GA, area (Hotel options listed below)


Tuesday, July 26

10:00-11:00 Pre-meeting/staging logistics/boat set-up (location TBD)
11:00-1:00 Lunch/travel to Big Lazar WMA
1:00-5:00 Side-scan mapping demo (Big Lazar PFA
7:00-whenever Group dinner (TBD)

Wednesday, July 27

8:00-12:00 Mapping data processing demo (Warm Springs Fish Tech Center)
12:00-1:00 Lunch
1:00-3:00 Mapping data processing demo (continued)
3:00-whenever Site tour of Flint River

Thursday, July 28

8:00-10:00 Reservoir Committee Business Meeting (if needed)


Warm Springs Regional Fisheries Center
5308 Spring Street
Warm Springs, GA 31830


Phone Number Distance from Warm Springs
Manchester, GA 5
Days Inn 706-846-1247
La Grange, Ga 25
Wingate 866-867-4486
Jameson Inn 706-882-8700
Best Western 706-884-6175
Pine Mountain, Ga 15
Days Inn 706-663-2121
Callaway Gardens 706-663-2281

I suggest we all try to stay at the Days Inn in Pine Mountain. Although closer, there are reports and suspicions that the one in Manchester may be sketchy. But if Crystal Meth parties are your thing, have at it! If you and/or your agency are independently wealthy (like those power company guys), then I am sure Callaway will pamper you up to your usual standards. If you get hives from staying more than 20 miles from an Interstate, then LaGrange is your bag. That is Hess territory, make sure you consult him to stay away from the bad part of town, which from what I can tell, is most of it….

For those arriving by air (Atlanta Airport):

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is located approximately 1 hour north of the Warm Springs area. If you can coordinate your arrival with other members, the area is easily access by a rental car. We can also arrange pickups and drop-offs for those who need it (what else are grad students for?). I recommend that you try to arrive at and/or depart from the Atlanta area before 4pm or after 6pm, to avoid the worst of the traffic. Although the airport is advantageously located for travel to and from Warm Springs, Atlanta traffic is frequently awful even when it should not be.

2011 Summer Meeting

Details are still being worked out, but we ARE going to have a summer meeting this year. Looks like a 2-3 day meeting, held somewhere near Atlanta, Georgia. Adam Kaeser will again be coming to the meeting, this time to provide a 2-day workshop on how to use dual-beam sonar and GIS software to map reservoir habitat. One day will be in the field, as Adam demonstrates the unit and how it works. The second day will be in the lab, where Adam takes the images collected the day before and shows us what to do next. Entertainment will consist of floating on area rivers for shoal bass.

As I understand it, the week of July 25 is the target for this. Thanks to Joey Slaughter and Brent Hess for working out the local arrangements. For now, block off that week and plan to attend- it’s gonna be a good ‘un!


2011 Annual Meeting Agenda

Reservoir Committee, Southern Division AFS
2011 Annual Meeting, Tampa, FL
9:00 am, January 13, 2009

  1. Welcome, opening remarks, introductions
  2. Reading and Approval of 2010 Annual Meeting Minutes
  3. Financial Report
  4. Scholarship Committee Report (K. Kuklinski)
  5. Old Business
    1. Update on the Reservoir Habitat Partnership and the RC Involvement (J. Boxrucker)
    2. Habitat Classification in Reservoirs (S. Sammons)
  6. New Business
    1. Common Technical Issues With Striped Bass Committee (J. Bulak)
    2. RC Website Maintenance (Life After Freddie)
    3. Chair Elect and Other RC Business
    4. Summer Meeting – More About Habitat Mapping in Reservoirs
  7. Roundtable Discussion – Issues Faced by RC members
  8. Adjourn

2010 Spring Meeting Agenda

Attached is the agenda for our meeting in Asheville.  If there are any last-minute additions, please let me know and I’ll add them and send out an updated agenda.

Also attached is the final version of the Reservoir Habitat Strategic Plan, developed by the Reservoir Fish Habitat Partnership.  Jeff Boxrucker and Steve Miranda will be giving us an overview of the Partnership and how the RC can be involved in this effort, so it may be worthwhile to familiarize yourselves with this plan.

Looking forward to seeing you in Asheville, come ready for a meeting packed with good information.  I have lined up two presentations on methods currently used to map aquatic habitats in the southeast, including reservoirs.  After these presentations, be prepared to ask questions and discuss these methods in a roundtable format with the presenters.  For the recent habitat partnerships (SARP and RFHP) to succeed, they must first be able to measure habitat successfully: both before and after any restoration.  We have spoken at length in various RC meetings over the last decade about the difficulties in measuring habitat in our reservoirs; I believe that both presentations will show you ways that we can economically and quickly measure habitat in a quantitative manner in even our largest reservoirs.
I look forward to a productive meeting….

Steven M. Sammons, PhD
Department of Fisheries
203 Swingle Hall
Auburn University,  AL  36849