A newcomer and a warning…about non-native fish

Rosyside Dace

A non-native fish is a newcomer to the Upper Valley. State biologists said yesterday the rosyside dace, a species of fish previously unknown in New Hampshire, is in Hewes Brook, a tributary of the Connecticut River in the Upper Valley. They probably number in the hundreds…and they probably were introduced to NH waters by “human intervention.”

The discovery was made last summer when state biologists were doing routine monitoring.

State officials warn that the introduction of aquatic non-native species to New Hampshire waters pose a serious danger to the ecological integrity of our waterways.

“Anglers are unlikely to catch the rosyside dace, but incidental capture is possible by means of baitfish trapping,” said Jason Smith, a biologist with Fish and Game.

Smith said that if you catch rosyside dace or “other non-native fish species previously undocumented in the state, release them back into the waters from which they were captured,” and contact: Fish and Game (603-271-2501) or Environmental Services (603-271-8865).

“There is no indication at this point that the rosyside dace could cause recreational or economic problems,” said Glenn Normandeau, the executive director of NH Fish and Game. “However, ecological impacts to the native fish community are possible depending on the ability of the species to expand its range and successfully propagate.”

According to this week’s news release, the rosyside dace is a member of the minnow family and typically inhabits small streams with adults ranging from two to four inches in length. Its native distribution extends from the Delaware River drainage in Pennsylvania to the Savannah River drainage in Georgia, as well as portions of the Ohio River basin.

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