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European rudd found in Ohio waters of Lake Erie

From the Ohio Department of Natural Resources

-- The first record of European rudd in Ohio waters was caught by licensed Ohio commercial fisherman Jim Swartz, who netted the fish near the Lakeside Pier in Marblehead and brought it to state fisheries biologists in Sandusky for identification, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.
 
European rudd, Scardinius erythrophthalmus, is a medium-sized fish native to Europe and Western Asia, where it is a popular food and game species. It was introduced to the United States in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century and may be found in as many as 20 other states.
 
Rudd were first recorded in the Great Lakes drainage in 1950, found in Canadian waters of Lake Erie in 1997, and more recently in Pennsylvania waters of Lake Erie in 2004. Rudd are benthic cyprinid fish (minnow family) with omnivorous feeding habits and a lifespan of up to 15 years. Adult size is about 18-20 inches. The fish is very similar to the golden shiner in appearance. They are abundant in the upper Niagara River and in Buffalo Harbor, New York.
 
Rudd may compete for invertebrate food sources with native fishes. Because rudd are fairly hardy, they are likely to fare better than many native fishes in waters that are low in oxygen or polluted.
 
Bait bucket release seems to be the primary mechanism by which rudd have spread. Lake Erie anglers are encouraged to drain all live wells and use only Ohio approved bait fish. Ohio law prohibits the introduction of any fish species into public waters without written permission from the ODNR Division of Wildlife.

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