European perch, Perch
Value of species
Throughout Europe to northernmost extremity of Scandinavia, except Iberian Peninsula, central Italy and Adriatic basin; Aegean Sea basin: Maritza and from Struma to Aliakmon drainages; Aral Sea basin; in Siberia, in rivers draining to Arctic Ocean eastward to Kolyma (replaced by P. flavescens in North America). Introduced in Ebro delta (Spain), central and southern Italy, Lake Skadar (Montenegro, Albania), Amur (Siberia), Australia and South Africa.
Habitat: A very wide range of habitats from estuarine lagoons, lakes of all types to medium sized streams.
Biology: Lives up to 21 years, usually to about six years. Males reproduce for the first time at 1-2 years, females at 2-4 years. Spawns in February-July, depending on latitude and altitude, when temperature reaches about 6°C. May undertake short spawning migrations. A female usually spawns with several males, once each year. The female circles the spawning site, followed by one male, while other males remain stationary. The egg strand is released as the female swims in spiral clockwise movements, folding herself into a U-shape. All eggs are released and fertilised within about 5 seconds in a single strand, which becomes twisted around and entangled with spawning substrate. Feeding larvae are positively phototactic, live in open water and feed on pelagic organisms. They may be widely distributed by currents. An opportunistic diurnal feeder, preying mainly at sunrise and sunset, using all available prey. Larvae and small juveniles usually prey on planktonic invertebrates. During first summer, many juveniles come near shores to feed on benthic prey. Often becomes piscivorous at about 120 mm SL. Stocks with different life-histories may co-occur in some lakes (littoral, benthic feeding, pelagic zooplanktivorous), sometimes with different spawning sites and times.
- Соколов Н.Ю. Каталог колекції круглоротих і риб Державного природознавчого музею НАН України // Наукові записки Державного природознавчого музею. – Львів, 2004. – Т.19. – С. 15-28.