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Eurasian Ruffe

Eurasian Ruffe

Fact Sheet
Scientific Name (Gymnocephalus cernua)
Classification and Permitting Level 1 - Prohibited Aquatic Nuisance Species
Species Description Eurasian ruffe is a small (up to 10 inches) invasive fish that resembles a yellow perch with walleye markings. It can be distinguished from native perch and walleye by its downturned mouth and lack of scales on its head.
Preferred Habitat It is typically found in non-vegetated areas near the bottom of lakes.
Reason for ANS Designation The Eurasian ruffe may harm native fish populations through their consumption of fish eggs, larval fish, and bottom-dwelling invertebrates. Native predatory fish tend to eat other native fish more frequently than Eurasian ruffe. Once established, there is no good control method.
Place of Origin Eurasian ruffe is native to northern Europe and Asia but was first documented in the United States in the 1980s. It is thought that the initial introduction was from the discharge of ballast water into the Great Lakes.
Stopping the Spread Do not attempt to stock a new species into a waterbody. Besides usually being illegal, new introductions of fish species may disrupt the current ecosystem.
Additional Information USGS Fact Sheet