Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Salvelinus fontinalis
(brook trout)

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Datasheet

Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 11 October 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Natural Enemy
  • Host Animal
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Salvelinus fontinalis
  • Preferred Common Name
  • brook trout
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Chordata
  •       Subphylum: Vertebrata
  •         Class: Actinopterygii
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Introductions of S. fontinalis began in the nineteenth century (Welcomme, 1988), to more than 40 countries in temper...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); artwork of adult fish.
TitleArtwork of adult fish
CaptionSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); artwork of adult fish.
CopyrightReleased into the Public Domain by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service/National Digital Library - Original artwork by Duane Raver Jr.
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); artwork of adult fish.
Artwork of adult fishSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); artwork of adult fish.Released into the Public Domain by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service/National Digital Library - Original artwork by Duane Raver Jr.
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); adult fish, swimming in native stream. USA
TitleAdult
CaptionSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); adult fish, swimming in native stream. USA
CopyrightPublic Domain - U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service/Eric Engbretson
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); adult fish, swimming in native stream. USA
AdultSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); adult fish, swimming in native stream. USAPublic Domain - U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service/Eric Engbretson
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); spawning in Shaws Creek, Ontario, Canada.
TitleSpawning
CaptionSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); spawning in Shaws Creek, Ontario, Canada.
Copyright©M.J. Godard
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); spawning in Shaws Creek, Ontario, Canada.
SpawningSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); spawning in Shaws Creek, Ontario, Canada.©M.J. Godard
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
TitleFish in hand
CaptionSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
Copyright©M.J. Godard
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
Fish in handSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.©M.J. Godard
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
TitleFish in hand
CaptionSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
Copyright©M.J. Godard
Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.
Fish in handSalvelinus fontinalis (brook trout); from a stream in Ontario, Canada.©M.J. Godard

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Salvelinus fontinalis (Mitchill, 1814)

Preferred Common Name

  • brook trout

Other Scientific Names

  • Baione fontinalis (Mitchill, 1814)
  • Salmo canadensis Griffith & Smith, 1834
  • Salmo fontinalis Mitchill, 1814
  • Salmo hudsonicus Suckley, 1861
  • Salmo immaculatus Storer, 1857
  • Salvelinus timagamiensis Henn & Rinkenbach, 1925

International Common Names

  • English: aurora trout; baiser; breeder; brook char; brook charr; brookie; char; coaster; common brook trout; eastern brook trout; eastern speckled trout; humpbacked trout; lord-fish; mountain trout; mud trout; native trout; salter; sea trout; slob; speckled char; speckled trout; specks; squaretail; square-tail; squaretailed trout; trout; whitefin
  • Spanish: salvelino; trucha de arroyo
  • French: omble de fontaine; saumon de fontaine; truite; truite de mer; truite mouchetée
  • Russian: Amerikanski goletz; Amerikanskiy golets

Local Common Names

  • Belgium: bronforel
  • Bulgaria: siven
  • Canada: iqaluk tasirsiutik; masamek; masamekos; masamekw; masumèk
  • Canada/Newfoundland and Labrador: aanaatlik; ana; anakleq; i ha luk; iqaluk
  • Canada/Quebec: aanak; âna; anokik; anuk
  • Czech Republic: siven americký; sivon potocny
  • Denmark: kildeørred
  • Estonia: Ameerika paalia
  • Finland: puronieriä
  • Germany: Amerikanischer Bachsaibling; Amerikanischer Saibling; Bachsaibling; Saibling
  • Greece: salvelinos
  • Hungary: pataki szajbling
  • Iceland: lindableikja
  • Iran: azad Mahi Cheshmahi
  • Italy: salmerino di fontana; salmerino di fonte
  • Japan: kawamasu
  • Latvia: Amerikas palija; avota palija
  • Lithuania: Amerikine palija
  • Netherlands: bronforel; kildeorred
  • Norway: bekkeror; bekkerøye; bekkerøyr
  • Poland: pstrag zrodlany
  • Portugal: truta-das-fontes
  • Romania: fântânel; fintinel; pastrav fântânel
  • Russian Federation: Amerikanski forel; Amerikanski goletz
  • Slovakia: sivon americký
  • South Africa: beekforel
  • Sweden: bäckröding
  • Switzerland: bachsaibling; salmerino di fontaine
  • Turkey: kaynak alabaligi
  • USA/Alaska: giigaq
  • Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro): kanadska pastrva; potocna zlatovcica

Summary of Invasiveness

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Introductions of S. fontinalis began in the nineteenth century (Welcomme, 1988), to more than 40 countries in temperate areas on all continents, including the southern hemisphere (Welcomme, 1992). S. fontinalis is considered a poor to moderate invader, and this is reflected in its mean fish invasiveness (FISK) score for the United Kingdom (13.5), i.e. the ‘medium risk’ (of being invasive) category (Copp et al., 2009). Potential impacts include predation on various species of amphibians, zooplankton and other invertebrates as well as increases in primary productivity (Adams et al., 2002; Dunham et al., 2004), alteration of nutrient cycles (Schindler et al.,2001), and hybridization with native species. This species is competitive, with broad dietary breadth, has a fast growth rate, often lacks predators or parasites, and is moderately tolerant of abiotic conditions (Welcomme, 1992). Introductions may lead to replacement of native salmonids (e.g. brown trout, Salmo trutta).

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Chordata
  •             Subphylum: Vertebrata
  •                 Class: Actinopterygii
  •                     Order: Salmoniformes
  •                         Family: Salmonidae
  •                             Genus: Salvelinus
  •                                 Species: Salvelinus fontinalis

Description

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S. fontinalis has a long streamlined body with an adipose fin close to the tail and a large mouth that extends past the eye. The back is olive, blue-grey to dark brown, very similar to the brown trout, but with a distinct marbled pattern of lighter colour (vermiculation). The sides are lighter than the back and have pale and red spots, which are surrounded by blue “halos”. The lower fins have white edges with a contrasting black stripe. The tail fin is square and slightly concave or rarely slightly forked. During the breeding season in the autumn, the male S. fontinalis can become very bright orange-red along the sides. Meristic characters are: dorsal spines (total) = 3–4; dorsal soft rays (total) = 8–14; anal spines = 3–4; anal soft rays = 8–14; vertebrae = 58–62.

The maximum recorded total length (TL) and weight in its native range is 86 cm and 9.3 kg, respectively (Page and Burr, 1991; FishBase, 2010), with a mean total length of 38–51 cm (Roberts, 2000), but in European waters it is usually smaller. Reported TLs vary between sources; from 25–30 cm (Smedman and Svärdson, 1966) to 30–40 cm, rarely exceeding 45 cm, and weights of 0.5–1 kg (Muus and Dahlström, 1981). In many natural waters, S. fontinalis are quite small, but in culture or artificially created fishery waters it can reach 2–3 kg (Smedman and Svärdson, 1966). In its native area the maximum recorded age is 7 years (FishBase 2010), but 24-year-old specimens have been reported from a stunted population in California, where the species was introduced (Reimers, 1979). In Europe maximum recorded ages of 3–5 (Muus and Dahlström, 1981; Grande, 1984) or up to 6 years is common (Smedman and Svärdson, 1966).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes

Sea Areas

Atlantic, NortheastPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004
Atlantic, NorthwestPresentNativeFroese and Pauly, 2004
Mediterranean and Black SeaPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004
Pacific, NorthwestPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004

Asia

ArmeniaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedKhorozyan, 2002
ChinaPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2010
IndiaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004
IranPresentIntroducedCoad, 1996; Froese and Pauly, 2004
JapanPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004
TurkeyPresentIntroducedInnal and Erk'Akan, 2006

Africa

KenyaPresentIntroducedSeegers et al., 2003; Froese and Pauly, 2004
MoroccoPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988
South AfricaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988
ZimbabwePresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004

North America

CanadaPresentNativeFroese and Pauly, 2004
-AlbertaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-British ColumbiaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991; Froese and Pauly, 2004
-ManitobaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-New BrunswickPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-Newfoundland and LabradorPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991; Froese and Pauly, 2004
-Nova ScotiaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-OntarioPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-Prince Edward IslandPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-QuebecPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991; Froese and Pauly, 2004
-SaskatchewanPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
MexicoPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Froese and Pauly, 2010
USAPresentNativeFroese and Pauly, 2004
-AlaskaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991; Froese and Pauly, 2004
-ArizonaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-ArkansasPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-CaliforniaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-ColoradoPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-ConnecticutPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-DelawarePresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-GeorgiaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-HawaiiPresentIntroducedMaciolek, 1984
-IdahoPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-IllinoisPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-IndianaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-IowaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-KentuckyPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-MainePresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-MarylandPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-MassachusettsPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-MichiganPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-MinnesotaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-MontanaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-NebraskaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-NevadaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-New HampshirePresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-New JerseyPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-New MexicoPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-New YorkPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-North CarolinaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-North DakotaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-OhioPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-OregonPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-PennsylvaniaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-Rhode IslandPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-South CarolinaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-South DakotaPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-TennesseePresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-UtahPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-VermontPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-VirginiaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-WashingtonPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991
-West VirginiaPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-WisconsinPresentNativeRobins et al., 1991
-WyomingPresentIntroducedRobins et al., 1991

South America

ArgentinaPresentIntroducedLopez et al., 1987; Froese and Pauly, 2004
BoliviaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004
ChilePresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2010
ColombiaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988
Falkland IslandsPresentIntroducedLever, 1996
PeruPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Froese and Pauly, 2010
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004

Europe

AlbaniaPresentDhora, 2010
AustriaPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
BelgiumPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
BulgariaPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
CyprusPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988
Czech RepublicPresentIntroducedHanel, 2003; Froese and Pauly, 2004
Czechoslovakia (former)PresentIntroducedHanel, 2003
DenmarkPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
EstoniaPresentIntroducedJansson, 2008
FinlandPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
FrancePresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
GermanyPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
GreecePresentIntroducedEconomidis, 1991; Froese and Pauly, 2004
HungaryPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
ItalyPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
LatviaPresentIntroducedJansson, 2008; Jansson, 2008
LithuaniaPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
NetherlandsPresentIntroducedBlanc et al., 1971; Froese and Pauly, 2004
NorwayPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
PolandPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
PortugalPresentIntroducedAlmaça, 1995
RomaniaPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
Russian FederationPresentIntroducedBogutskaya and Naseka, 2002; Froese and Pauly, 2004
SerbiaPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988
SlovakiaPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
SloveniaPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001
SpainPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
SwedenPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004; Jansson, 2008
SwitzerlandPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
UKPresentIntroducedElvira, 2001; Froese and Pauly, 2004
-England and WalesPresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)PresentIntroducedFroese and Pauly, 2004

Oceania

AustraliaPresentIntroducedMcKay, 1989; Froese and Pauly, 2004
New ZealandPresentIntroducedWelcomme, 1988; Froese and Pauly, 2004
Papua New GuineaPresentIntroducedKailola, 1987; Froese and Pauly, 2004

History of Introduction and Spread

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The native distribution of S. fontinalis ranges from northeastern North America from the Atlantic seaboard south to Cape Cod, in the Appalachian Mountains southward to Georgia, west in the upper Mississippi and Great Lake drainages to Minnesota, north to Hudson Bay (Scott and Crossman, 1973). The species has been introduced to temperate areas all over the world. In Europe, it is present in 20 countries from Spain in the south to Norway in the north. It has also been introduced to the western USA, temperate areas of South America, Asia, Africa and Oceania (Josefsson, 2006). S. fontinalis was first introduced into European waters during the late nineteenth century, to countries such as Norway (Hesthagen and Sandlund, 2007), France (Beisel and Levêque, 2010), Denmark (Muus and Dahlstrøm, 1984), Germany (Welcomme, 1988), Latvia (Nature of Latvia, 2006), Lithuania (NOBANIS, 2006), Poland (Solarz, 2006), Russian Federation (Bogutskaya and Naseka, 2002), the UK (Lehtonen, 2002) and Sweden (Filipsson, 1994). In many countries the first introductions were not considered “successful”, i.e. they did not result in established populations; however, continued stockings during the nineteenth and twentieth century has led to S. fontinalis becoming established in most of Northern Europe (NOBANIS, 2006), with populations believed to be established in high altitude lakes of Corsica, Italy, the Czech Republic and southern Germany (M. Kottelat, Switzerland and J. Freyhof, IGB, Berlin, Germany, personal communication, 2010).

Introductions

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Introduced toIntroduced fromYearReasonIntroduced byEstablished in wild throughReferencesNotes
Natural reproductionContinuous restocking
Alaska 1900-1924 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Argentina USA 1904 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Australia 1883 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Austria Germany 1970 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Belgium USA 1890-1899 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably established
Bolivia Chile 1948 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
British Columbia Quebec 1908 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Bulgaria Czechoslovakia (former) 1930 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Chile Canada unknown Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
China USA unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Colombia 1955 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Cyprus Italy 1971 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Czech Republic 1880 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Denmark Germany 1895 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Ecuador unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Estonia Germany 1896 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Falkland Islands Chile 1941-1945 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Finland USA 1895 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably established
Finland Germany 1895 No No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably established
France USA 1904 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Germany USA 1890 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Greece unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Hawaii California 1876 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Hungary Germany 1925-1949 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
India Canada 1960 No No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably not established
Indian Ocean, Western France 1962 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010) Introduced to Kerguelen Islands, Indian Ocean
Iran unknown Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Italy USA 1891 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Japan USA 1901 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Kenya UK 1950 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Latvia unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Lebanon unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably not established
Lithuania unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Mexico USA unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Morocco France 1941 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Netherlands Belgium 1800s No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
New Zealand USA 1877-1887 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Norway Denmark 1870 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Papua New Guinea Australia 1974 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Peru USA 1955 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Poland Germany 1881 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Portugal 1900-1997 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Romania Austria 1800s Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Russian Federation USA 1900-1924 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Slovakia 1890 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
South Africa USA 1950 No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Spain France 1934 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably established
Sweden Denmark 1872 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Sweden Germany 1872 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Switzerland Germany 1883 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Turkey 1990-1999 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
UK unknown No No Froese and Pauly (2010)
UK USA 1868 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Venezuela USA 1937 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)
Yugoslavia (former) Austria 1892 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010) Probably established
Zimbabwe South Africa 1955 Yes No Froese and Pauly (2010)

Risk of Introduction

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S. fontinalis were intentionally introduced for aquaculture, sport fisheries and for food production beginning in the late nineteenth century throughout many temperate regions of the world. In Europe, S. fontinalis was originally considered an attractive species, especially for sports fisheries, and it has been extensively stocked in natural waters. Escapees from hatcheries and aquaculture facilities have also been reported. Since S. fontinalis is more tolerant of a lower pH than some fish species, e.g. the native brown trout (Salmo trutta), it has been used as a replacement when populations of native salmonid species have dwindled or become locally extinct because of acidification.

Habitat

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S. fontinalis occur in clear, cool, well-oxygenated creeks, small to medium rivers, and lakes, usually seeking temperatures below 20°C (Scott and Crossman, 1973). In its native range, general upstream movements have been observed in early spring, summer and late autumn; downstream movements, in late spring and autumn. Some populations of S. fontinalis are anadromous, i.e. they spend part of their life cycle in marine or brackish waters, but return to freshwater to reproduce.

Habitat suitability for salmonids is often controlled by temperature regime, flow regime, stream size and habitat factors correlated with stream gradient and channel geomorphology and this stands true for this species introduced range.

Habitat List

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CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Freshwater
Lakes Principal habitat Natural
Ponds Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Reservoirs Secondary/tolerated habitat Productive/non-natural
Rivers / streams Principal habitat Natural

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics
 
The chromosome number of S. fontinalis is 2n=84, with 16 meta-centric (biarmed) and 68 acrocentric (uni-armed) chromosomes. S. fontinalis can form viable hybrids such as splake, which is a cross between a male S. fontinalis and a female lake trout (S. namaycush), sparctic charr is a cross between S. fontinalis and Arctic charr (S. alpinus) and tiger trout is a cross between a female S. fontinalis and a male brown trout (Salmo trutta). Some of these hybrids are fertile and can maintain self-reproducing populations. Information on DNA sequence analysis of S. fontinalis can be found in Hardy et al. (2011).
 
Reproductive Biology
 
S. fontinalis reach sexual maturity after two to four years. Spawning takes place most often over gravel beds in the shallows of headwaters of streams but may be successfully accomplished in gravelly shallows of lakes if there is spring upwelling and a moderate current (Scott and Crossman, 1973). This species spawns in late summer or autumn, depending on latitude and temperature, and the eggs hatch in the spring, after about 100 days. The eggs are deposited in a redd or nest, a small pit constructed by the female on a gravelly substrate (Muus and Dahlström, 1981). The fry remain hidden in the gravel, feeding on the yolk sac, until water temperature begins to rise in early spring, when they emerge to search for insects to feed from (Mayhew, 1987). The eggs are large, 3.5–5.0 mm in diameter, with the number deposited depending on the size of the female, varying from 100 for a 144 mm TL female to 5000 eggs for a 565 mm TL female (Scott and Crossman, 1973).
 
Associations
 
In its native range, S. fontinalis has been reported to be associated with three trematodes, Ptychogonimus fontanus, Eubothrium salvelini and Neoechinorhynchus cylindratus (Scott and Crossman, 1973) and diseases such as Whirling Disease, Enteric Redmouth Disease, Hysterothylacium infection and Camallanus infection (Froese and Pauly, 2010).
 
Environmental Requirements

S. fontinalis occur in clear, cool, well oxygenated streams and lakes seeking temperatures below 68°F (20°C) (Scott and Crossman, 1973).

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
C - Temperate/Mesothermal climate Preferred Average temp. of coldest month > 0°C and < 18°C, mean warmest month > 10°C
Cf - Warm temperate climate, wet all year Preferred Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, wet all year
Cs - Warm temperate climate with dry summer Preferred Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry summers
Cw - Warm temperate climate with dry winter Preferred Warm temperate climate with dry winter (Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry winters)
D - Continental/Microthermal climate Tolerated Continental/Microthermal climate (Average temp. of coldest month < 0°C, mean warmest month > 10°C)
Df - Continental climate, wet all year Tolerated Continental climate, wet all year (Warm average temp. > 10°C, coldest month < 0°C, wet all year)
Ds - Continental climate with dry summer Tolerated Continental climate with dry summer (Warm average temp. > 10°C, coldest month < 0°C, dry summers)
Dw - Continental climate with dry winter Tolerated Continental climate with dry winter (Warm average temp. > 10°C, coldest month < 0°C, dry winters)
E - Polar climate Tolerated Polar climate (Average temp. of warmest month < 10°C)
ET - Tundra climate Tolerated Tundra climate (Average temp. of warmest month < 10°C and > 0°C)

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
65-30

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 0

Water Tolerances

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ParameterMinimum ValueMaximum ValueTypical ValueStatusLife StageNotes
Dissolved oxygen (mg/l) 7 9 Optimum 5 tolerated (Raleigh, 1982)
Salinity (part per thousand) Optimum 32 tolerated (Raleigh, 1982)
Water pH (pH) Optimum 4.5 tolerated (Raleigh, 1982)
Water temperature (ºC temperature) 7 20 Optimum 0-25 tolerated (Raleigh, 1982)

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Ichthyomyzon castaneus Parasite Adult not specific

Notes on Natural Enemies

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Natural enemies of S. fontinalis include larger fish, piscivorous birds (including mergansers and kingfishers), and mammals such as otters and bears.

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Natural Dispersal (Non-Biotic)

Young of the year washed downstream by water, adults naturally dispersed through migration.
 
Accidental Introduction
 
Possible as a contaminant of other salmonid stocking, but no specific cases are cited.
 
Intentional Introduction
 
Introduced for angling as well as through the aquaculture industry.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Aquaculture Yes Yes
Fisheries Yes Yes
Food Yes Yes
Hunting, angling, sport or racing Yes Yes
Intentional release Yes Yes
Stocking Yes Yes

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Aquaculture stockAll life stages for aquaculture Yes Yes
WaterAll life stages by natural dispersal Yes Yes

Economic Impact

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S. fontinalis is mainly used for sports fisheries, so there is an economic benefit for individual fishermen as well as the creation of jobs in the aquaculture industry.

Environmental Impact

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Impact on Habitats 

Studies from North America on the effects of introductions of S. fontinalis into waters where it is not native have shown impacts such as decline of native salmonid species. Species that have been replaced or negatively impacted include strains of cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki), golden trout (O. aguabonita), and bull trout (S. confluentus). It has also been hypothesized that S. fontinalis may have been responsible for the lack of success in establishing populations of stocked Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus). S. fontinalis has also been identified as one of the factors contributing to the continued decline of threatened populations of Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). In addition to out-competing the salmon, they may be important predators of salmon eggs and juveniles (NOBANIS, 2006). In New Zealand, it has been shown that there is a significant dietary overlap between non-native S. fontinalis with native Salmo trutta (Fechney, 1988). Recent evidence from France provides information on both dietary overlap (Cucherousset et al., 2007) and reproductive interference (Cucherousset et al., 2008) of introduced S. fontinalis with native Salmo trutta. This indicates that the diet of the two species overlaps to an extent greater than expected, based on stable isotope signatures (Cucherousset et al., 2007). Also, introduced S. fontinalis may be having detrimental effects on native Salmo trutta reproductionthrough subtle hybridization behaviour, which was manifested by consistent spatial and temporal overlap in redd sites and spawning periods, mixed-species spawning groups, inter-specific subordinate males, and the occurrence of natural (tiger trout) hybrids (Cucherousset et al., 2008).
 
Impact on Biodiversity
 
The impact of introductions of S. fontinalis are relatively well documented. For instance, in Canada S. fontinalis is known to hybridise with threatened native S. confluentus (Leary et al., 1993), in France, introductions have resulted in a significant reduction of amphibians in the lakes of Hautes-Pyrenees (Delacoste et al., 1997). In Spain, S. fontinalis predation on the native newt species Triturus helveticus, T. alpestris and T. marmoratus has resulted in a significant reduction in their distributions in northern Spain (Orizoala and Brana, 2006). In the USA, the introduction of S. fontinalis to naturally fish-less Sierra Nevada lakes, specifically in Kings Canyon National Park and John Muir Wilderness, incited changes in the benthic macroinvertabrate and zooplankton communities (Knapp et al., 2001).

Threatened Species

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Threatened SpeciesConservation StatusWhere ThreatenedMechanismReferencesNotes
Ambystoma gracileNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Ambystoma macrodactylumNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Ambystoma tigrinumNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Anaxyrus boreas (western toad)NT (IUCN red list: Near threatened) NT (IUCN red list: Near threatened)Canada; USAPredationISSG, 2009
Ascaphus truei (coastal tailed frog)No details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Pseudacris maculataNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Pseudacris regillaNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Rana cascadaeNT (IUCN red list: Near threatened) NT (IUCN red list: Near threatened)USAPredationISSG, 2009
Rana chiricahuensis (Chiricahua leopard frog)VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable) VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable)Mexico; USAPredationISSG, 2009
Rana ibericaNo details No detailsPortugal; SpainPredationISSG, 2009
Rana luteiventris (Columbia spotted frog)LC (IUCN red list: Least concern) LC (IUCN red list: Least concern)PredationISSG, 2009
Rana muscosa (mountain yellow-legged frog)EN (IUCN red list: Endangered) EN (IUCN red list: Endangered); USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesUSAPredationISSG, 2009
Rana sylvaticaNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Salvelinus confluentus (bull trout)VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable) VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable); USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesCanada; USAHybridizationISSG, 2009
Triturus alpestrisNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Triturus helveticusNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Triturus marmoratusNo details No detailsPredationISSG, 2009
Iotichthys phlegethontis (least chub)EN (IUCN red list: Endangered) EN (IUCN red list: Endangered)UtahPredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2013c
Oncorhynchus apache (apache trout)CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered) CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered); USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesArizonaCompetition - monopolizing resources; Ecosystem change / habitat alterationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2009
Catostomus warnerensis (Warner sucker)EN (IUCN red list: Endangered) EN (IUCN red list: Endangered); USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesCalifornia; Nevada; OregonPredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2010
Oncorhynchus clarkii henshawi (Lahontan cutthroat trout)USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesCalifornia; Nevada; Oregon; UtahCompetition (unspecified); PredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2000
Oncorhynchus clarkii seleniris (Paiute cutthroat trout)USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesCaliforniaCompetition (unspecified); PredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2013a
Rana pretiosa (Oregon spotted frog)VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable) VU (IUCN red list: Vulnerable); USA ESA listing as threatened species USA ESA listing as threatened speciesCalifornia; Oregon; WashingtonPredation,
Thymallus arcticus (arctic grayling)LC (IUCN red list: Least concern) LC (IUCN red list: Least concern)MontanaPredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2013b

Social Impact

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In addition to the value of S. fontinalis for individual fishermen, recreational fishing and tourism may create a demand not only for food, accommodation and transportation, but also for related recreational activities such as camping, boating, canoeing, etc; all of which may provide economic opportunities locally. In areas where native species of salmonids have disappeared because of acidification, S. fontinalis is likely to be seen as a positive replacement.

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Tolerant of shade
  • Capable of securing and ingesting a wide range of food
  • Highly mobile locally
Impact outcomes
  • Altered trophic level
  • Changed gene pool/ selective loss of genotypes
  • Conflict
  • Damaged ecosystem services
  • Host damage
  • Increases vulnerability to invasions
  • Modification of natural benthic communities
  • Modification of nutrient regime
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of endangered species
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition
  • Hybridization
  • Interaction with other invasive species
  • Predation
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally illegally
  • Difficult/costly to control

Uses

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Economic Value
 
S. fontinalis is a popular species with anglers in its native range and in some locations of its introduced range, in particular where native salmonids have been extirpated due to other factors, S. fontinalis could represent a replacement species that contributes to local economies.
 
Social Benefit
 
The value of S. fontinalis as an angling species has knock-on benefits for society in terms of recreation.
 
Environmental Services

S. fontinalis is said to modify nutrient cycling in lakes through its grazing of zooplankton, which in cases of drinking-water reservoirs could have adverse implications for environmental services.

Uses List

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General

  • Research model
  • Sport (hunting, shooting, fishing, racing)

Detection and Inspection

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Vermiculations along dorsal muscle, as well as white leading edge on fins, and red spots with blue halos along the lateral line.

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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S. fontinalis is generally similar in appearance to a number of salmonid species, including the Pacific salmons and brown trout (Salmo trutta), but is easily distinguished from the latter during the spawning period because of its bright red belly.

Prevention and Control

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Prevention
 
SPS measures
 
EU Council Regulation No 708/2007 of 11 June 2007 concerning use of alien and locally absent species in aquaculture (ASR). S. fontinalis is listed in Annex IV of the ASR, which means that the species may be exempted for regulations under the ASR in Member States of the European Union that wish to afford that exemption. Otherwise, the species must undergo risk assessment in order to inform the so-called ‘Competent Authority’ of the Member State, which will decide whether or not to allow the introduction and on the management measures required, if any.
 
Early warning systems
 
The list server L-ALIENS provides an international forum for announcing recent discoveries of non-native species. A similar, but peer-review function for non-native aquatic organisms is provided by the international journal, Aquatic Invasions (http://www.aquaticinvasions.net), which was set up as part of the EC Integrated Project No. 506675 ‘Assessing LArge scale environmental Risks for biodiversity with tested Methods (ALARM)’.
 
Rapid response
 
This is established at the national level.
 
Public awareness
 
There is very limited data available on this in Europe, but in Canada, Trout Unlimited (http://tucanada.org/) post information on their website about removals (mainly through fishing oppurtunities) as well as information about this species’ negative impacts on native species.
 
Eradication
 
Six to eleven multi-pass electrofishing efforts successfully eradicated non-native S. fontinalis from 1.7 to 3.0 km treatment reaches of four streams (Shepard, 2010). Adult S. fontinalis were successfully removed from a small sub-alpine lake in California using intensive gill netting (Knapp and Matthews, 2004).
 
Control
 
As established populations are difficult and costly to control, further introductions or stocking with S. fontinalis should be avoided.
 
Physical/mechanical control
 
Electrofishing (see ‘Eradication’)
 
Movement control
 
Intentional introduction should not be permitted without appropriate risk assessment and consideration of management options.
 
Biological control
 
There are no known forms of biological control specific to S. fontinalis.
 
Chemical control
 
The only effective method of fish eradication is the application of rotenone, a pesticide that is also toxic to non-target native species
 
Host resistance
 
Bacteriophages can be used to prevent furunculosis (Aeromonas salmonicida) in S. fontinalis (Imbeault et al., 2006).
 
Monitoring and Surveillance
 
Both radio and acoustic telemetry can be used with S. fontinalis.
 
Ecosystem Restoration

Shepard (2010) states that after the eradication of S. fontinalis, numbers of native Oncorhynchus clarkii lewisi increased as did the total environmental biomass.

Gaps in Knowledge/Research Needs

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Gaps in knowledge include information on containment/zoning, and control by utilization. And although there is information on the impacts that have resulted in North America from introductions of S. fontinalis outside its native range, there are relatively few such studies for Europe and even fewer elsewhere.

References

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Links to Websites

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WebsiteURLComment
ISSG database global Invasive Species Database)http://www.issg.org

Organizations

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France: Laboratoire d'Ecologie Fonctionnelle (EcoLab), Universite Paul Sabatier, 118 route de Narbonne, F-31062 Toulouse (Cedex 9), http://www.cict.fr

UK: CEFAS (Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science), Cefas Weymouth Laboratory, Barrack Road, Weymouth, Dorset DT4 8UB, Weymouth, UK, http://www.cefas.co.uk/

Contributors

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20/12/10 Original text by:

Gordon Copp, CEFAS, Salmon and Freshwater Team, Pakefield Road, Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR33 0HT, UK

Michael Godard, Consultant, UK

Distribution Maps

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