Esox americanus vermiculatus
Esox americanus vermiculatus
(Grass Pickerel)
Native Transplant
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Esox americanus vermiculatus Lesueur, 1846

Common name: Grass Pickerel

Taxonomy: available through www.itis.govITIS logo

Native Range: Florida and Gulf Slope drainages west to the Brazos River, Texas; northward in the Mississippi drainage (eastern Texas and Oklahoma, southern and eastern Missouri, the eastern board of Iowa, and southeastern Wisconsin) to the Great Lakes (southern Michigan, north shore of lakes Erie and Ontario) (Crossman 1978). Remnant populatoins in Nebraska likely refect a once, much larger westward range (Crossman 1978). Individuals in the southeastern part of the range are intergrades with E. a. americanus (Crossman 1978; Lee et al. 1980).

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Puerto Rico &
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Guam Saipan
Native range data for this species provided in part by NatureServe NS logo
Interactive maps: Point Distribution Maps

Nonindigenous Occurrences: Grass pickerel were stocked in Lake Cuyamaca near San Diego, California (Smith 1896; Crossman 1978) in the late 1800s; in Palmer Lake, Colorado (Ellis 1974); in un-specified areas or Oregon (Li, personal communication); in Finnel and Cow lakes, in streams in the Palouse River drainage (Wydoski and Whitney 1979), in lakes near Spokane, and streams of southeastern Washington (Chapman 1942; Lampman 1946; Crossman 1978); and the Wisconsin and Chippewa drainages (Burr and Pge 1986), and northern Wisconsin (Crossman 1978).

Means of Introduction: This species was stocked intentionally and possibly accidentally; it was stocked illegally in Oregon.  Probably introduced inot Washington as misidentified northern pike E. lucius (Chapman 1942); it is also possible that grass pickerel were introduced into Idaho along with northern pike, and that the former species reached Washington by "some devious means" (Wydoski and Whitney 1979).  Introduced into northern Wisconsin in the 1940s (Crossman 1978).

Status: Extirpated in California; established in Colorado, Washington, and Wisconsin; unknown in Oregon.

Impact of Introduction: Unknown.

Remarks: This species is sometimes mistaken for the young of other Esox species. 

Other Resources:
FishBase Summary

Author: Fuller, P.

Revision Date: 3/4/2015

Peer Review Date: 4/1/2016

Citation Information:
Fuller, P., 2018, Esox americanus vermiculatus Lesueur, 1846: U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL,, Revision Date: 3/4/2015, Peer Review Date: 4/1/2016, Access Date: 1/19/2018

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.

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Page Last Modified: Thursday, January 04, 2018 (DMZ)


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Citation information: U.S. Geological Survey. [2018]. Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database. Gainesville, Florida. Accessed [1/19/2018].

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