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Invasive Species: Zander
*Not detected in Michigan*
Report this species:
Use the Midwest Invasive Species Information Network (MISIN) online reporting tool.
- Or - download the MISIN smartphone app and report from your phone - MISIN.MSU.edu/tools/apps/#home.
- Slender body, grey-green back, white belly, dark transverse rings.
- Average length: 50 cm.
- 2 dorsal fins, pointed head, many small teeth and a few large teeth.
- Not a hybrid of a pike and perch.
Photo courtesy of eLNuko.
Photo courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org.
Habitat: Eutrophic lakes, brackish coastal lakes/estuaries, and large turbid rivers. Homing is well developed and migrations can be as far as 250 km.
Diet: Predominantly feed on gregarious fishes in pelagic waters.
Native Range: Continental Europe to western Siberia.
U.S. Distribution: There is an established population of zander in Spiritwood Lake in North Dakota.
Local Concern: Introduction into Michigan waters could lead to a crash in some fish communities. There is also a concern for hybridization with walleye.
Potential Means of Introduction: Biomanipulation, illegal stocking.
Other Names: European pike perch.
Native look-alikes and how you can tell them apart from a zander:
- Walleye: Body color is much more golden, light dorsal fin with a dark area at the base, white spot on the bottom of the tail.
- Sauger: Spots on the dorsal fin.
- Yellow Perch: 6-9 vertical bars on their sides, no canines.