Common name: Totoaba
Synonyms and Other Names: (totuava, totoaba).
available through www.itis.gov
Identification: Fischer et al. (1995). Synonym is Cynoscion macdonaldi.
Size: 200 cm.
Native Range: Marine; Gulf of California (Fischer et al. 1995).
This species was introduced to the Salton Sea, California, on three occasions during the period 1950-1956 (Walker et al. 1961; Dill and Cordone 1997).
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 Totoaba macdonaldi are found here.
Table last updated 2/26/2021
† Populations may not be currently present.
Means of Introduction: Intentionally stocked for sportfishing. In 1950, a single fish was stocked; in 1951, less than 200; and in 1956, 8 were stocked. Stock was obtained from San Felipe, Mexico (Walker et al. 1961).
Status: The introduction failed to produce a viable population and the species is extirpated in the Salton Sea.
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)
Dill, W.A., and A.J. Cordone. 1997. History and status of introduced fishes in California, 1871--1996. California Department of Fish and Game. Fish Bulletin 178.
Fischer, W., F. Krupp, W. Schneider, C. Sommer, K.E. Carpenter, V.H. Niem. 1995. Guía FAO para la identificatión de especies para los fines de la pesca. Pacifico centro-oriental. Volumen III. Vertebrados - Parte 2. Vol. III: 1201--1813. Roma, FAO.
Walker, B.W., R.R. Whitney, and G.W. Barlow. 1961. Fishes of the Salton Sea. 77-92 in B.W. Walker, ed. The ecology of the Salton Sea, California, in relation to the sport fishery of California. California Department of Fish and Game, Fish Bulletin 113.
IUCN Red List
Revision Date: 2/19/2020
Peer Review Date: 9/13/2011
Fuller, P., 2021, Totoaba macdonaldi (Gilbert, 1890): U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, https://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/FactSheet.aspx?speciesID=961, Revision Date: 2/19/2020, Peer Review Date: 9/13/2011, Access Date: 2/26/2021
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.