150 Fishes to Celebrate 150 Years

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150 Fishes to Celebrate 150 Years

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 solicited 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

Fish nominations are now closed.

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.


Catchy TitleKeep Calm and Paddlefish On
Common Name of FishAmerican Paddlefish
Scientific Name of FishPolyodon spathula
Description of Why This Fish Is Important/Interesting

I have only started to get interested in fish a few months ago, and have a special interest in primitive fishes. When I recently heard that the Chinese Paddlefish has gone extinct, it affected me more than I thought a fish ever could. It's amazing to me that a fish can exist on this planet for millions of years and deeply saddens me that humans can cause it's demise. While the American Paddlefish has not suffered the fate of it's Chinese counterpart, they are still considered vulnerable by the IUCN. I will admit that I do not know much about the Paddlefish (and much of what I do know was learned while researching it for this nomination), but I think it is a fish that perhaps many people do not know much about but should know more. I want this fish to be on the list because I don't want it to become a ghost of our planet's past like the Chinese Paddlefish did.

Website or Journal Article for More Informationhttps://www.fws.gov/fisheries/freshwater-fish-of-america/paddlefish.html
Your NameJennifer Clausen