150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish


150 Fish

150 Fishes to Celebrate 150 Years

Please Nominate Your Favorite Fish

In 2020, the American Fisheries Society will celebrate its 150th Anniversary. As part of the celebration, the Society will be calling attention to 150 fishes. We are soliciting nominations of fishes for the list by the Society’s membership.

The 150 Fishes list is a celebration of the biodiversity of freshwater and marine fishes of North America. These fishes will help tell the story of fish and fisheries of the continent. They may illustrate unique life histories, beauty, conservation issues, and challenges of managing and conserving these animals and their habitats.  These fishes represent our native biodiversity, but also illustrates how invasives and our own human nature have had impacts on our aquatic resources. Hence, this list will primarily focus on native species but may include non-natives when they tell a compelling fisheries story. From the stories of these fishes, the Society and the public can learn to better appreciate these amazing natural resources and be challenged to ensure that future generations will be able to experience these fishes in their native settings.

Nomination Process

To nominate a fish, see the form below.

In the first box, please type the common name of the fish species you wish to nominate. In the second box, type an eye-catching title (limit 80 characters including spaces). In the third box, please provide a brief (1000 characters including spaces or less) story justifying inclusion of your fish nominee. In the fourth box, provide one or two links (i.e., URLs) to more information on your fish nominee. If possible, upload an un-copyrighted photo of your fish nominee together with an image caption and credit. In the next boxes provide your first and last names. Finally, include your email in case we need to reach you. Nominations have been extended until December 31, 2019.

Selection Process

A 10-person committee comprised of celebration committee members and members at large will make the selections. Only completed nominations will be considered. Selections will be based on the compelling nature of the justification for inclusion, the quality of the story, appeal to the membership and the public, and significance of the fish to fisheries and natural resources conservation and management in North America. Multiple nominations of the same species could require combining justification stories. In this case, all nominators that contributed material used will be acknowledged. The decision of the committee is final.

The committee will be tasked with fact-checking and proofing the justification stories. Each committee member will be responsible editing the justification stories for 15 fishes from the list.

Circulation Process

The 150 Fishes list will reside at the 150th Anniversary Website, information about individual fish from the list will be circulated through various social media platforms throughout the year.

This list is meant to be a fun for members and informative for the public. It is unlikely we will be able to include all nominations. We acknowledge that every fish has a story. There may be opportunities to discuss all the nominated fishes in the future.


150 Fish Nomination Form

  • Please write this in a style appropriate for the general public.
  • Drop files here or
    Only upload images if you own the copyright, you have permission of the copyright holder, or the image is in the public domain.


Alligator Gar: River Monster or Charismatic Megafauna?

Alligator Gar

Atractosteus spatula

Nominator:Steve Lochmann

Image of Fish
Credit: Beth Beard

If having a scaly body, a large mouth and lots of pointed teeth qualifies something as a monster, then the Alligator Gar is definitely a river monster. In season one of the popular television show River Monster, host Jeremy Wade fished the Trinity River, Texas for this prehistoric fish that reaches lengths up to 10 ft. and weight of more than 300 lbs. Alligator Gar are charismatic megafauna, by virtue of their size, symbolic value, and popularity. Alligator Gar restoration is underway in many states where populations declined due to habitat alteration. The presence of a viable population of this keystone species indicates a healthy riverine fish community. Alligator Gar popularity is exemplified by the campaign of 11-year-old Henry Foster to have the Alligator Gar declared Arkansas’s state fish. According to Foster, Alligator Gar are “tough and unique.” Alligator Gar appear to be both river monster and charismatic megafauna.

Website or Journal Article for More Information

Transactions of the American Fisheries Society Special Section: Angling for Dinosaurs, https://afspubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/toc/15488659/2018/147/4


Alaska Blackfish
Alligator Gar
Alligator gar
American Eel
American eel
American Paddlefish
American Paddlefish
American Paddlefish, Spoonbill, Teaspoon (really small ones)
American shad
Apache Trout
Arctic Grayling
Atlantic Cod
Atlantic Croaker
Atlantic Flyingfish
Atlantic hagfish
Atlantic menhaden
Atlantic Sturgeon
Atlantic trumpetfish
Atlantid salmon
Banded Killifish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Barrens Topminnow
Bigmouth Buffalo
Black Bullhead
Black Crappie
Black Sea Bass
Blue sucker
Blue Sucker
Bluefin Tuna
Bluehead Chub
Bluehead Chub
Bonneville Cutthroat Trout
Bonytail chub
Bowfin. Grinnel, Choupique, Swamp Musky, Beaverfish, Dogfish, Mudfish, etc
Brook trout
Brook Trout
Brown trout
Brown Trout
Bull Trout
bull trout
Bull Trout
Bull Trout
Cahaba Shiner
California Grunion
California Sheephead
Caribbean Neon Goby
Caribbean Sharpnose Puffer
Carolina Madtom
Chain Pickerel
Channel Catfish
Chinook salmon
Chum Salmon
Cisco (lake herring)
Coho salmon
Coho Salmon
Colorado Pikeminnow
Common Carp
[email protected]
Crystal darter
Cutthroat Trout
Deepwater sculpin
Delta Smelt
Desert Pupfish
Fathead Minnow
Flathead Catfish
Freshwater Drum
Gila Topminnow
Gila Trout
Gray Triggerfish
Green moray
Green Sturgeon
Gulf killifish
Gulf Menhaden
Humpback Chub
Humuhumunukunukuapuaa, Wedge-tail triggerfish
Iowa Darter
Lake Sturgeon
Lake Trout
Largemouth bass
Lined Seahorse
Longnose sucker
Nassau Grouper
Niangua Darter
Northern Lampfish
Northern Madtom
Northern Pike
Northern Red Snapper
Ocean sunfish
Orange Spotted Sunfish
Oregon Chub
oyster toadfish
Ozark cavefish
Pacific electric ray
Pacific Halibut
Pacific Lamprey
Pacific Lamprey
Pacific Lamprey
Pacific mackerel
Pacific sardine
Pancake Batfish
Peppered Shiner
pirate perch
Pygmy Whitefish
Queen Parrotfish
Rainbow Darter
rainbow or steelhead trout
Rainbow Trout
Razorback Sucker
Red Drum
Red grouper
Rio Grande Cutthroat Trout
Rio Grande Slivery Minnow
Round whitefish
Roundtail Chub
Sandbar Shark
Sea lamprey
sergeant major
Shoal Bass
Shoal Bass
Shovelnose Sturgeon
Sickle Darter
Silver Carp
Sirajo Goby
Slimy Sculpin
Smallmouth Bass
Smallmouth Buffalo
smalltooth sawfish
Smoky Madtom
Snail darter
Snail Darter
Sockeye Salmon
Sonoyta (Quitobaquito) Pupfish
Spiny Dogfish
Spotfin Killifish
Spotted Seatrout
Steelhead Trout
Strawberry Darter
Striped Bass
Striped Sea Robin
Summer Flounder
Suwannee Bass
Three-spined stickleback
Westslope Cutthroat Trout
Whale Shark
White Shark
White Sturgeon
White Sturgeon
Yellow Perch
Yellowfin shiner
Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout
Yoma Danio