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Fishes of the Dakotas

Species Checklist


State Game and Fish Department
100 North Bismarck Expressway
Bismarck, North Dakota 58501-5095


Fish species checklists and status classifications have been periodically conducted in both North and South Dakota; however, this list is the first document that combines checklists and status classifications for both states.

The Dakota Chapter of the American Fisheries Society commissioned the development and production of this brochure. Fisheries experts from universities, and State and Federal government provided their input and insight. Descriptions of species classifications have no legal authority in either North or South Dakota. Instead these classifications are meant to provide useful information on the respective status of all fish species in the Dakotas.

According to Dakota Chapter resource professionals, there are 11 and 17 fish species in North and South Dakota respectively that are considered to be either extirpated, endangered, threatened or species of concern (SC1). In addition, 15 species in North Dakota and 18 species in South Dakota have been introduced, either intentionally or unintentionally, and are currently present. Approximately two-thirds of all native fish species in both states require no classification; thus indicating no immediate concern.

The Dakota Chapter intends to update this brochure every five to ten years as new information becomes available. This effort will assist in tracking the status of native fish species over time.

Photo by William R. Roston.

This resource is based on the following source:

North Dakota Game and Fish Department.  1994.  Fishes of the Dakotas.  North Dakota Game and Fish Department, Bismarck, ND.

This resource should be cited as:

North Dakota Game and Fish Department.  1994.  Fishes of the Dakotas.  North Dakota Game and Fish Department, Bismarck, ND.  Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online. (Version 16JUL97).

Classification Descriptions

Blank ( ) Line ( -- ) Extirpated (Ex) Hybrid (H) Endangered (E) Threatened (T) Species of Concern (SC) Peripheral (P) Introduced (I)

* portions modified from the North Dakota Chapter of the Wildlife Society

Species Inventory                            North Dakota         South Dakota

Number of Species Documented                     103                  111

Number of Species Present                         96                  109

Number of Hybrids Documented                       3                    5

Number of Hybrids Present                          3                    4

Number of Native Species Documented               83                   90

Number of Native Species Present                  81                   90

Number of Introduced Species Documented           20                   20

Number of Introduced Species Present              15                   18

Species Status                               North Dakota         South Dakota

Extirpated                                        2                    0

Endangered                                        2                    4

Threatened                                        2                    7

Special Concern 1                                 5                    6

Specieal Concern 2                                3                   12

Peripheral/Special Concern 1                      7                    3

Peripheral/Special Concern 2                      3                    5

Peripheral                                        7                    5

Native With No Classification                    52                   48

                                                               North   South
PETROMYZONTIDAE		                                       Dakota  Dakota

Ichthyomyzon castaneus Girard--chestnut lamprey                P/SC1
Ichthyomyron unicuspis Hubbs and Trautman--silver lamprey      P/SC2   P/SC1


Acipenser fulvescens Rafinesque--lake sturgeon                 Ex      SC2
Scaphirhynchus albus (Forbes and Richardson)--pallid sturgeon  E       E
Scaphirhynchus platorynchus (Rafinesque)--shovelnose sturgeon  --      --


Polyodon spathula (Walbaum)--paddlefisb                        SC1     SC1


Lepisosteus osseus (Linnaeus)--longnose gar                    SC1     SC1
Lepisosteus platostomus Rafinesque--shortnose gar              P       --


Amia calva Linnaeus--bowfin                                            SC2


Hiodon alosoides (Rafinesque)--goldeye                         --      --
Hiodon tergisus Lesueur--mooneye                               --      P/SC2


Anguilla rostrata (Lesueur)--American eel                              P


Alosa chrysochloris (Rafinesque)--skipjack herring                     P
Dorosoma cepedianum (Lesueur)--gizzard shad                    P       --


Campostoma anomalum (Rafinesque)--central stoneroller          P/SC1   SC2
Compostoma oligolepis Hubbs & Green--largescale stoneroller    P
Carassius auratus (Linnaeus)--goldfish                                 I
Couesius plumbeus (Agassiz)--lake chub                         --      P/SC1
Ctenopharyngodon idella (Valenciennes)--grass carp             I       I
Cyprinella lutrensis (Baird & Girard)--red shiner              --      --
Cyprinella spiloptera (Cope)--spotfin shiner                   --
Cyprinus carpio Linnaeus--common carp                          I       I
Hybognathus argyritis Girard--western silvery minnow           --
Hybognathus hankinsoni Hubbs--brassy minnow                    --      --
Hybognathus nuchalis Agassiz--Mississippi silvery minnow       --      --
Hybognathus placitus Girard--plains minnow                     --      --
Luxilus cornutus (Mitchill)--common shiner                     --      --
Macrhybopsis gelida (Girard)--sturgeon chub                    T       T
Macrhybopsis meeki (Jordan & Everman)--sicklefin chub          E       T
Macrhybopsis storeriana (Kirtland)--silver chub                SC2     P
Margariscus margarita Cope--pearl dace                         SC1     E
Nocomis biguttatus (Kirtland)--hornyhead chub                  P/SC1   SC1
Notemigonus crysoleucas (Mitchill)--golden shiner              --      --
Notropis anogenus Forbes--pugnose shiner                       T
Notropis atherinoides Rafinesque--emerald shiner               --      --
Notropis blennius (Girard)--river shiner                       --      SC2
Notropis doralis (Agassiz)--bigmouth shiner                    --      --
Notropis heterodon (Cope)--blackchin shiner                            SC2
Notropis heterolepis Eigenmann & Eigenmann--blacknose shiner   P/SC1   SC2
Notropis hudsonius (Clinton)--spottail shiner                  --      --
Notropis rubellus (Agassiz)--rosyface shiner 	               P/SC1   P/SC1
Notropis shumardi (Girard)--silverband shiner                          SC2
Notropis stramineus (Cope)--sand shiner                        --      --
Notropis topeka (Gilbert)--Topeka shiner                               SC1
Phenacobius mirabilis (Girard)--suckermouth minnow                     SC2
Phoxinus eos (Cope)--northern redbelly dace                    SC1     T
Phoxinus neogaeus Cope--finescale dace                         P/SC1   T
Pimephales notatus (Rafinesque)--bluntnose minnow              --      --
Pimephales promelas Rafinesque--fathead minnow                 --      --
Platygobio gracilis (Richardson)--flathead chub                SC1     --
Rhinichthys atratulus (Hermann) -blacknose dace                --      --
Rhinichthys cataractae (Valenciennes)--longnose dace           --      --
Scardinius erythrophthalmus (Linnaeus)--rudd                           I
Semotilus atromaculatus (Mitchill)--creek chub                 --      --


Carpiodes carpio (Rafinesque)--river carpsucker                --      --
Carpiodes cyprinus (Lesueur)--quillback                        --      SC2
Catostomus catostomus (Forster)--longnose sucker               --      T
Catostomus commersoni (Lacepede)--white sucker                 --      --
Catostomus platyrhynchus (Cope)--mountain sucker                       P
Cycleptus elongatus (Lesueur)--blue sucker                     SC1     SC1
Erimyzon sucetta (Lacepede)--lake chubsucker                   Ex
Hypentelium nigricans (Lesueur)--northern hog sucker                   SC2
Ictiobus bubalus (Rafinesque)--smallmouth buffalo              --      --
Ictiobus cyprinellus (Valenciennes)--bigmouth buffalo          --      --
Ictiobus niger (Rafinesque)--black buffalo                             SC2
Moxostoma anisurum (Rafinesque)--silver redhorse               P
Moxostoma erythrurum (Rafinesque)--golden redhorse             --      P/SC2
Morostoma macrolepidotum (Lesueur)--shorthead redhorse         --      --
Moxostoma valenciennesi Jordan--greater redhorse               P


Ameiurus melas (Rafinesque)--black bullhead                    --      --
Ameiurus natalis (Lesueur)--yellow bullhead                    P/SC2   P
Ameiurus nebulosus (Lesueur)--brown bullhead                   --      --
Ictalurus furcatus (Lesueur)--blue catfish                             SC1
Ictalurus punctatus (Rafinesque)--channel catfish              --      --
Noturus exilis Nelson--slender madtom                                  --
Noturus flavus Rafinesque--stonecat                            --      --
Noturus gyrinus (Mitchill)--tadpole madtom                     --      --
Pylodictis olivaris (Rafinesque)--flathead catfish             P/SC1   SC1


Esox lucius Linnaeus--northern pike                            --      --
Esox masquinongy Mitchill--muskellunge                         I       I
E. lucius E. masquinongy--tiger muskie                         H/I     H/I


Umbra limi (Kirtland)--central mudminnow                       P       E


Osmerus mordax (Mitchill)--rainbow smelt                       I       I


Coregonus artedi LeSueur--lake herring (cisco)                 I       I
Coregonus clupeaformis (Mitchill)--lake whitefish              I       I
Oncorhynchus clarki (Richardson)--cutthroat trout              Ie      I
Oncorhynchus kisutch (Walbaum)--coho salmon                    Ie      Ie
Oncorhynchus mykiss (Richardson)--rainbow trout                I       I
Oncorhynchus nerka (Walbaum)--kokanee salmon                   Ie      I
Oncorhynchus tshawytscha (Walbaum)--chinook salmon             I       I
Prosopium gemmifer (Snyder)--Bonneville cisco                          Ie
Salmo trutta Linnaeus--brown trout                             I       I
Salvelinus fontinalis (Mitchill)--brook trout                  Ie      I
Salvelinus namaycush (Walbaum)--lake trout                     I       I
S.fontinalis × S. namaycush--splake trout                              H/I


Percopsis omiscomaycus (Walbaum)--trout-perch                  SC2     T


Lota lota (Linnaeus)--burbot                                   --      --


Fundulus diaphanus (LeSueur)--banded killifish                 P       E
Fundulus sciadicus Cope--plains topminnow                              T
Fundulus zebrinus Jordan & Gilbert--plains killifish                   --


Culaea inconstans (Kirtland)--brook stickleback                --      --


Morone chrysops (Rafinesque)--white bass                       I       I
Morone saxatilis (Walbaum)--striped bass                       I
M. chrysops × M. saxatilis--wiper                                      H/Ie


Ambloplites rupestris (Rafinesque)--rock bass                  --      --
Archoplites interruptus (Girard)--sacramento perch             Ie      --
Lepomis cyanellus Rafinesque--green sunfish                    --      --
Lepomis gibbosus (Linnaeus)--pumpkinseed                       --      --
Lepomis humilis (Girard)--orangespotted sunfish                --      --
L. humilis × L. gibbosus--orangespotted/pumpkinseed hybrid     H
Lepomis macrochirus Rafinesque--bluegill                       --      --
L. macrochirus × L. cyanellus--bluegill/green sunfish hybrid           H
Micropterus dolomieu Lacepede--smallmouth bass                 I       I
Micropterus salmoides (Lacepede)--largemouth bass              I       --
Pomoxis annularis Rafinesque--white crappie                    --      --
Pomoxis nigromaculatus (LeSueur)--black crappie                --      --


Etheostoma exile (Girard)--Iowa darter                         --      --
Etheostoma nigrum Rafinesque--johnny darter                    --      --
Perca flavescens (Mitchill)--yellow perch                      --      --
Percina caprodes (Rafinesque)--logperch                        P/SC2   P/SC2
Percina maculata (Girard)--blackside darter                    --      P/SC2
Percina phoxocephala (Nelson)--slenderhead darter                      SC2
Percina shumardi (Girard)--river darter                        SC2
Stizostedion canadense (Smith)--sauger                         --      --
Stizostedion lucioperca (Linnaeus)--zander                     I
Stizostedion vitreum (Mitchill)--walleye                       --      --
S. canadense × S. vitreum--saugeye                             H       H


Aplodinotus grunniens Rafinesque--freshwater drum              --      --


Cichlasoma synspilum (Hubb)--redhead                                   I

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