Common name: Emerald Shiner
available through www.itis.gov
Identification: Becker (1983); Robison and Buchanan (1988); Page and Burr (1991); Jenkins and Burkhead (1994); Pflieger (1997).
Size: 13 cm.
Native Range: St. Lawrence drainage, Quebec; Hudson River drainage, New York to Mackenzie River drainage (Arctic basin), Northwest Territories, and south through Great Lakes and Mississippi River basins to Gulf; Gulf Slope drainages from Mobile Bay, Alabama, to Galveston Bay, Texas (Page and Burr 1991).
Table 1. States with nonindigenous occurrences, the earliest and latest observations in each state, and the tally and names of HUCs with observations†. Names and dates are hyperlinked to their relevant specimen records. The list of references for all nonindigenous occurrences of Notropis atherinoides are found here.
Table last updated 2/27/2023
† Populations may not be currently present.
Ecology: In its native range in the Upper Niagra River, Notropis atherinoides juveniles are more often found in natural habitat (e.g. marshes) than developed habitat (e.g. seawalls; Cochran 2017). Cochran (2017) also found that larvae recruited to sampling gear in July and August. This species is a key forage species in its native range (Cochran 2017).
Means of Introduction: This species was stocked as forage in Jennings Randolph Reservoir, Maryland (Christmas, personal communicaton), Lake McConaughy, Nebraska (Bouc 1987), and in certain Wyoming reservoirs (Hubert 1994). Its presence in two reservoirs in New York may be due either to bait bucket releases or to movement through the Old Chenango Canal (Snelson 1968; Smith 1985). Snelson (1968) also hypothesized that the widespread occurrence of this species in the Mohawk-Hudson system of New York may have been a result of dispersal through the Erie Canal system. If records from West Virginia represent introductions, the method of entry was likely by way of bait bucket releases. The species probably was brought to Maine illegally as a baitfish; however, information on the location and exact date of its first occurrence in the state has been lost (Kircheis 1994). It was introduced into Willard Bay Reservoir in Utah in 1983 (Sigler and Sigler 1987). The Emerald Shiner has been stocked for forage in many Colorado reservoirs (Colorado Division of Wildlife).
Status: Introduced populations considered established in Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New York, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Impact of Introduction: The impacts of this species are currently unknown, as no studies have been done to determine how it has affected ecosystems in the invaded range. The absence of data does not equate to lack of effects. It does, however, mean that research is required to evaluate effects before conclusions can be made.
References: (click for full references)
Cochran, J.L. 2017. Ecology of the Young-of-the-Year Emerald Shiner (Notropis atherinoides) in the Upper Niagara River, New York: Growth, Diversity, and Importance as a Forage Species. Unpublished M.A. thesis. State University of New York College at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY.
Colorado Division of Wildlife. 2010 . Fishery Survey Summaries - Horsetooth Reservoir http://wildlife.state.co.us/NR/rdonlyres/66A1D75B-BCF7-4D51-9A72-4CDDBB623D6D/0/Horsetooth09.pdf
Hocutt, C.H., R.E. Jenkins, and J.R. Stauffer, Jr. 1986. Zoogeography of the Fishes of the Central Appalachians and Central Atlantic Coastal Plain. In C.H. Hocutt and E.O. Wiley, eds. The Zoogeography of North American Freshwater Fishes. 161-212.
Hubbs, C.L. 1931. Identification of lake shiners in Au Sable River, Iosco County, and desirability of planting same in Hubbard and other lakes. (Fisheries research report: 108). Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Ann Arbor, MI. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/f/fishery/AAG2862.0108.001?rgn=main;view=fulltext.
Schmidt, R. E. 1986. 1986. Zoogeography of the Northern Appalachians. In C.H. Hocutt and E.O. Wiley, eds. The Zoogeography of North American Freshwater Fishes. 137-160.
Revision Date: 12/2/2019
Peer Review Date: 5/17/2010
Nico, L., 2023, Notropis atherinoides Rafinesque, 1818: U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, https://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/FactSheet.aspx?SpeciesID=582, Revision Date: 12/2/2019, Peer Review Date: 5/17/2010, Access Date: 3/20/2023
This information is preliminary or provisional and is subject to revision. It is being provided to meet the need for timely best science. The information has not received final approval by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and is provided on the condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from the authorized or unauthorized use of the information.