Lepomis gibbosus

Identification Tips:

• Body is tall, thin and disc- like
• Very colourful, with yellow belly, blue on head and dark spot on rear of gill cover.
• Reaches 20 cm

• Dorsal fin: 10 - 12 spines; 10 - 12 soft rays
• Anal fin: 3 spines; 8 - 11 soft rays

Conservation Status:

British ColumbiaCanadaNatureserve
COSEWICSpecies at Risk Act
Introduced SpeciesNot AssessedNoneG5

Information Source: BC Conservation Data Centre: http://a100.gov.bc.ca/pub/eswp/

Life History:

• Very common in warmer streams, ponds and sloughs of the Fraser Valley
• Feeds on snails, worms, crustaceans and insects, fish eggs and small fish.
• Breeds in late spring or early summer.
• Males construct saucer shaped nest in shallow water over sand, gravel or mud bottoms, usually close to aquatic vegetation.
• Nests are often arranged in groups of up to 15.
• Mature in 2nd or 3rd year and typically live for 6 to 8 years.


•Found in lakes, ponds, sloughs and pools of creeks and small rivers, often among aquatic vegetation.


British Columbia
•Introduced to BC
•Widespread across Fraser Valley, southern Vancouver Island, Okanagan and southern Kootenays.

•Native to eastern North America from New Brunswick to Manitoba and south to South Carolina and Kentucky.
•Widely introduced in western North America and Europe.
•Widely introduced internationally


This species has caused extirpation (local extinction) of some scientifically valuable stickleback populations on Vancouver Island.

Primary Information Source:
McPhail, J.D. 2007. The Freshwater Fishes of British Columbia. University of Alberta Press. Edmonton, Alberta.