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Fishes of Idaho

How are your identification skills? Do you know which are native and which were introduced? To see photos and descriptions, and learn more about Idaho fish, check out our Fishes of Idaho online database.

There are around 20,000 species of fish in the world. About 58% of these are marine (saltwater) fish, 41% are freshwater fish, and 1% are both. We have around 100 species in Idaho, and the list keeps growing as more non-native fish are released into Idaho waters. There are only 39 species of fish native to Idaho. The rest were introduced--some by accident, but most on purpose.

(Salmonoids)

Bonneville cisco (Prosopium gemmiferu)

Native

The Bonneville cisco is native only to Bear Lake in Idaho and Utah. These fish first reproduce at the age of three and a 6 inch female can produce over 2,500 eggs, to be spawned in winter. Bonneville cisco are planktivores, feeding primarily on zooplankton. Like the Bear Lake whitefish the Bonneville cisco is not usually captured with standard fishing gear, but they are reported to be good eating.

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