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 TitleSwashbuckler of the Coastal Seas
Common Name of FishSailfish
Scientific Name of FishIstiophorus platypterus
Image Caption and CreditI have access to many images
Description of Why This Fish Is Important/Interesting

This species is one of the most colorful and spectacular pelagics and is America's most sought after recreational billfish. It represents Florida's official "State Fish", and sailfish worldwide continue to support some of the largest recreational fisheries and have become an economic staple for such fisheries. In the Western North Atlantic alone sailfish played an important role in development of catch and release tactics now used around the world for all billfish angling. This species remains the "every day angler's" most available billfish to target successfully.

Website or Journal Article for More InformationAtlantic Sailfish, Past and Present,Marlin Mag. March 2011-pgs. 40-45; Bull. of Marine Science Vol. 29. No.2 Survival of Tagged and Released Atlantic Sailfish Determined with Accoustal Telementry, 1979.
Your NameJohn Jolley