Spotfin shiner

Spotfin shiner

Characteristics

the distinctive color of this fish is outstanding, having steel blue back and sides overlaid with silver shading and dark scale pockets that form a diamond design, with a prominent black blotch in the last few rays of the dorsal fin, sub-terminal mouth

Distribution

Spotfin shiner Distribution

very common in interior streams in north-central and northeast Iowa

Foods

insects, vegetable material, and some small fish

State Record

3 inches

Expert Tip

Details

The spotfin shiner is very common in our interior streams in north-central and northeast Iowa, but it is found only in a few scattered locations in occasional abundance throughout western and southern Iowa streams. The spotfin shiner has a moderately slender body form and is slab-sided. The distinctive color of this fish is outstanding, having steel-blue back and sides overlaid with silver shading and dark scale pockets that form a diamond design. The anal fin of breeding males is often bright yellow, and the back is pigmented with olive green, shading to purple and blue. There is a prominent black blotch in the last few rays of the dorsal fin, which differs from the dusky fin of the red shiner. Dorsal, anal, and pelvic fins contain 8 rays, while the pectoral fins contain from 13 to 15 rays. A slightly sub-terminal mouth is oblique and has no barbel. Strongly hooked pharyngeal teeth on sturdy arches are arranged in a l, 4-4, 1 pattern. The complete lateral line contains 36 to 38 scales and is slightly de-curved.

The spotfin shiner prefers habitat that is shallow with swift water flowing over sand flats. Spawning sites are chosen over irregular surfaces so the eggs can be deposited into small crevices where they are safe through incubation. Spawning may occur over an extended period from May through August. Adults reach 3 inches in length and forage on insects, vegetable material and some small fishes. Spotfin shiners are displaced by red shiners when the habitat is altered by increased turbidity and siltation. This shiner makes an excellent aquarium fish and because of its brilliant colors is a good bait minnow.


Return
Present in these Iowa water bodies:
Lake/Stream County Location Acres/Length
Pool 19, Mississippi River Lee Amenities listed are at City of Ft. Madison boat ramp. Amenities vary by location in Pool 19 33500.00
Pool 18, Mississippi River Louisa Amenities listed are for the Toolsboro Ramp. The ramp at Toolsboro is paved but the road to the ramp is gravel. There is some shore fishing along the parking area and at the outlet of Lake Odessa. Amenities vary by location in pool 18 13300.00
Pool 16, Mississippi River Scott The amenities list are for Buffalo Shores campground in Buffalo, Iowa. Amenities at other locations in Pool 16 vary by location. 13000.00
Pool 17, Mississippi River Muscatine Amenities list for Muscatine City Ramp. This ramp is located in downtown Muscatine. Amenities vary by location in Pool 17. 7580.00
Coralville Reservoir Johnson 4 miles north of Iowa City 5280.00
Lake Macbride Johnson 4 miles West of Solon 940.00
Missouri River (Sioux City to Little Sioux) Harrison Chris Larsen Park: 1280 Larsen Park Road/Sioux City, IA. Located on the Sioux City riverfront along the Missouri River. Larsen Park offers 110 acres on the Sioux City Riverfront. Managed by the City of Sioux City. 64.00
Missouri River (Council Bluffs to state line) Fremont Lake Manawa State Park: 1100 South Shore Drive/Council Bluffs, IA 51501 phone: 712-366-0220. Managed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Lake Manawa State Park has boat ramps on the Missouri River within the park. 61.00
Cedar River (La Porte City to Cedar Rapids) Linn This stretch is located in Benton and Linn County. 56.00
Cedar River (Cedar Rapids to Moscow) Cedar This stretch is found in Linn and Cedar County. 55.00