150 Fishes to Celebrate 150 Years

This list is still in progress and being added to weekly. Check back again soon!

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 TitleAn uncommon fish, the Common Carp
Common Name of FishCommon Carp
Scientific Name of FishCyprinus carpio
Image of FishImage of Fish
Image Caption and CreditCommon carp (Cyprinus carpio). Public domain image from USFWS . Created by Duane Raver.
Description of Why This Fish Is Important/Interesting

Invasive and unwanted in North America, Common Carp are nonetheless one of the most important fishes in the world. This humble fish has fed more people than nearly any other, and is also at the crossroads of important events in the history of fisheries science and management.

Fish culture began with cultivation of Common Carp in China perhaps as early as 2000-1000 BCE. For context, the first attempts at Common Carp aquaculture in China likely predated the invention of wheels with spokes, iron-based metals, and the phonetic alphabet!

Common Carp were stocked widely throughout the United States before fisheries scientists understood the consequences of playing ‘Johnny Appleseed’ with aquatic species. Today, Common Carp provide a sore reminder of the dangers of tinkering with carefully balanced ecosystems.

As we reflect on our past and look to the future, we would do well to remember the Common Carp.

Website or Journal Article for More Informationhttps://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10641260903189243
Your NameJesse Trushenski