Guides and Keys to Larval and Early Juvenile Fishes
The following PDF files and compressed folders (data sets) are, respectively, early life stage identification guides and computer- interactive keys to the catostomid and (or) cyprinid fishes of the Upper Colorado River Basin, Gila River Basin, Middle Rio Grande, and Pecos River Basin, as well as a key to the families of fishes in the Gila River Basin and a draft early life-stage key to the families of fishes in U.S. and Canadian fresh waters. The key data-sets require and are accessed by the host computer-interactive key program DELTA-INTKEY, either installed on your computer (instructions follow) or run from a portable memory device (e.g., CD or USB flash drive ). In use, the keys can be limited to consider only selected taxa or taxa in predefined regions or basins (e.g., in the Upper Colorado River Basin cyprinid key, only species in the Yampa River or the genus Gila, or in the North American family-level key, only families found in The Upper Colorado River Basin, Middle Rio Grande or Great Lakes region).
To use the keys:
- Download, extract, and configure the INTKEY program without cost as instructed from the DELTA-Intkey website. All will be housed in a home directory or folder labeled “Delta”.
- Download one or more of the larval fish keys below. These are zip compressed folders of data-set files and subfolders for use by the INTKEY program. Decompress (extract) them as data-set subfolders in your Delta folder (e.g., under C:/Delta if the INTKEY software was extracted in the root directory on computer’s primary hard drive).
- Open the INTKEY program (click on “Intkey5.exe”) and “Select data set” by browsing the subfolder where the desired key data set is stored and selecting the key startup file which will have a file-name beginning with “Intkey” and ending with the suffix “ink” (e.g., Intkeyxx.ink). The folder name of each key data set below is shown below in italics.
Gila River Basin
Snyder, D. E., K. R. Bestgen, and S. C. Seal. 2005. Native cypriniform fish larvae of the Gila River Basin- morphological descriptions, comparisons, and computer-interactive keys. Final report Colorado State University Larval Fish Laboratory to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix, Arizona. Contribution 143 of the Larval Fish Laboratory, Colorado State University. (109 MB)
Key to the Catostomids (639 KB). Intkey data set name = Cat-grb
Key to the Cyprinids (686 KB). Intkey data set name = Cyp-grb-r
Key to the Families (475 KB). Intkey date set name = Fam-grb
Pecos River and Rio Grande basins
Brandenburg, W. H., D. E. Snyder, S. P. Platania, and K. R. Bestgen. 2018. Cyprinid fish larvae and early juveniles of the middle and lower Pecos River and Rio Grande—morphological descriptions, comparisons, Illustrations, and computer-interactive key. Final report of American Southwest Ichthyological Researchers to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Albuquerque, New Mexico and Salt Lake City, Utah. (482 MB)
Key to the Cyprinids-Pecos River (1.8 MB). Intkey data set name = Cyp-pr-r.
Snyder, D. E., S. C. Seal, J. A. Charles, W. H. Brandenburg, and C.L. Bjork. 2019. Cypriniform fish larvae and earl juveniles of the Middle Rio Grande, New Mexico- morphological descriptions, comparisons, and computer-interactive keys. Revised final report of Colorado State University Larval Fish Laboratory to U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Salt Lake City, Utah (LFL Contribution 215). (81 MB)
Key to the Catostomids-Middle Rio Grande (1.4 MB). Intkey data set name = Cat-mrg
Key to the Cyprinids-Middle Rio Grande (1.5 MB). Intkey data set name = Cyp-mrg
Upper Colorado River Basin
Snyder, D. E. and R. T. Muth. 2004. Catostomid fish larvae and early juveniles of the Upper Colorado River Basin—morphological descriptions, comparisons, and computer-interactive key. Colorado Division of Wildlife Technical Publication 42, Contribution 139 of the Larval Fish Laboratory, Colorado State University. (42 MB)
Snyder, D. E., S. C. Seal, J. A. Charles, and C. L. Bjork. 2016. Cyprinid fish larvae and early juveniles of the Upper Colorado River Basin—morphological descriptions, comparisons, and computer-interactive key. Colorado Parks and Wildlife Technical Publication 47. Contribution 197 of the Larval Fish Laboratory, Colorado State University. (38 MB)
Key to the Catostomids (696 KB). Intkey data set name = Cat-ucrb
Key to the Cyprinids (840 KB). Intkey data set name = Cyp-ucrb-r
North America (United States and Canada)
Key to the Families (490 KB). Intkey data set name = fam-na-r
Bibliography – Early Life History of Fishes
2002 update of: Hoyt, R. D. 1988. A bibliography of the early life history of fishes.; volume 1, list of titles. Dept. of Biology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green. (Updated by D. E. Snyder and T. Kennedy; Microsoft word document, 3.4Mb.)
Original LFL FTP Site Layout
CIK data sets
- Cat-grb.zip (639 KB)
- Cat-mrg.zip (1.4 Mb)
- Cat-ucrb.zip (696 KB)
- Cyp-grb-r.zip (686 KB)
- Cyp-mrg.zip (1.5 MB)
- Cyp-pr-r.zip (1.8 MB)
- Cyp-ucrb-r.zip (813 KB)
- Fam-grb.zip (475 KB)
- Fam-na-r.zip (576 KB)
INTKEY, the host program for these key data files, can be downloaded without cost from: https://www.delta-intkey.com, select “Installing and running the programs.”
- ELHBIB20.zip (932 KB)
- pkz204g.exe (198 KB)
PDFs of Guides or Documents.
- Snyder_and_Muth_2004.pdf (42 MB)
- Snyder_et_al_2005-Gila_Guide_Final_Report-r2.pdf (109 MB)