Value of species
The relationships of this species are not yet clear. It is unique among European cyprinids with is long, slender, highly compressed body with a sharp keel from throat to anus, but this appearance is shared with some Asian species, especially Macrochirichthys macrochirus. In recent years it has been placed in the Leuciscinae or the Cultrinae. Kottelat and Freyhoff (2007) tentatively place it in Leuciscinae.
Black, Caspian and Aral Sea basins; Baltic basin from Vistula to Neva drainages, southern Sweden and Finland, Lakes Ladoga and Onega. Occasionally on Baltic coast west of Vistula and on Finnish coast north of 61°N.
Abundant in large rivers and dams (resevoir).
Habitat: Surface of open waters of large rivers and lakes. Abundant in reservoirs (Don, Volga). Semi-anadromous individuals forage and spawn in pelagic. freshened parts of sea or lower parts of rivers, in main channel or floodplains. Lacustrine populations spawn in open water of lakes.
Biology: Lives up to nine years. Spawns for the first time at 3-5 years, 200-300 mm SL. Semi-anadromous individuals start entering rivers in July (Don). When rivers are covered by ice, spawning migration ceases and is resumed with breaking up of ice in April-May. Resident individuals are found in rivers year-round. Spawns in May-June, earlier in southern drainages (April in Syr-Darya) at temperatures above 12°C. Eggs are semi-pelagic and drift with the current (in rivers). Eggs hatch after 3-4 days. Adults return to estuaries to forage immediately after spawning. Juveniles may migrate to estuaries during first summer. Feeds on zooplankton, terrestrial invertebrates and small fish.
- 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.