GOLDen SHINER

FISH PROFILE

COMMON NAME

Golden Shiner

Scientific name

Notemigonus crysoleucas

FAMILY

Cyprinidae family

LENGTH

7-12 inches

DIET

Opportunistic omnivores – will eat anything small, including plankton, plants, insect, fish eggs, and snails

FISH PROFILE

COMMON NAME

Golden Shiner

Scientific name

Notemigonus crysoleucas

FAMILY

Cyprinidae family

LENGTH

7-12 inches

DIET

Opportunistic omnivores – will eat anything small, including plankton, plants, insect, fish eggs, and snails

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS

Golden Shiners distinguishing features are: Crescent-shaped (curved) anal fin, small, upturned mouth, their bodies can be silver or gold in color, and their fins often have a reddish or orange tint.

RANGE, HABITAT, AND BEHAVIOR

Common across the U.S., although more common east of the Mississippi River. Prefer calm, clear, vegetated backwaters of lakes and rivers, but occupy a wide variety of habitats. Prefer to school together for safety.Golden shiners prefer quiet waters and are therefore found in lakes, ponds, sloughs, and ditches. They are sometimes found in the quietest parts of rivers. They like weedy areas. They are fairly tolerant of pollution, turbidity, and low oxygen content. They can also tolerate temperatures as high as 40 °C (104 °F), which is unusually high for a North American minnow.

FUN FACTS

Like other minnows, Golden Shiners can sense a substance called “schreckstoff,” which is released by minnows in distress and serves as an alarm system to other minnows that there is a predator in the area. In one study, golden shiners could detect and avoid the area where there was feces from snakes that had eaten other golden shiners. Another behavior common to minnows and seen in golden shiners is “egg dumping,” leaving eggs in the nest of a species that guards their own brood. Golden shiners are commonly used as live bait to fish for bass.

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