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Your sightings and comments:

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From: Tommy
Date: 12/11/2009
Fish sighted: Goldfish
Location: Sawmill river, NY.

I caught a foot long comet gold fish in the sawmill river while I was fishing with my cousin when we saw this fish we jumped in the water with a net and caught him.

From: Troy
Date: 10/4/2008
Fish sighted: Plecostomus
Location: Jordan River, UT.

I was fishing near the pumps that feed the river and caught a pleco by some warmer spots in the river.

From: Tristan
Date: Summer - 2006
Fish sighted: Tiger Oscar
Location: Lake Rhodhiss, NC.

This past summer while fishing, I was bored and was playing around my jig on the side of the lake, when I caught a tiger oscar. These were the dark colored oscars with the orange markings. It was pretty weird that this fish could survive here because, it gets cold enough for the oscar to even survive. So this must mean that someone just recently released him there. But I took him home and he died before I could put him in a aquarium. He was slightly bigger than the ones you buy from the pet store. This one was about 6-7 inches long. This lake has rare fishes from what I've heard. Some friends told me that they caught this funny looking fish and released him because they didn't know what it was. But it seemed like a bowfish from their descriptions but there are bowfishes in NC but not a lot in this lake.

From: Tristan
Date: 03/10/2006
Fish sighted: Jaguar Cichlid
Location: TN-USA

Our private pond comes from a small branch of a creek & we're no stranger to exotic goldfish & koi being caught in our pond. However, I was amazed when, during a nice day of fishing, my friend called me over to see "the strangest fish I've ever seen". Upon further investiagtion, I found out it was a foot long Jaguar Cichlid. The only way we think it could of gotten there was by being released into the creek. Don't ask me how it survived the temperate waters to get to our pond, though.



From: Beng Yong Tang
Date: 7/05/2004
Fish sighted: many, see text
Location: Canals and Reservoirs in Singapore

The following non-native fish have been caught in canals, ponds and reservoirs in Singapore:

  • guppies- once common but now rare mollies- found in brackish canals
  • Gambusia- mosquito fish, now rare
  • Oreochromis mossambicus- tilapia (and its hybrids with other Oreochromis spp.), found in brackish canals and some reservoirs, population has crashed since the 1990s, probably due to hybridization with red tilapia hybrids. The hybrids may have decreased salinity tolerance, sex ratios strongly skewed towards more males, and take much longer to become sexually mature, which characteristics good for fish farming, but bad for wild stocks. Releasing mutant fish or hybrids to breed with wild populations is a possible means of controlling introduced species.
  • Cyprinus carpio- common carp, found in Pandan canal, numbers may be declining.
  • Parachromis managuensis- Jagua guapote, in Pandan canal, has become the only fish species found in some stretches (ate up the others).
  • Cichla spp. (more than one species)-
  • Peacock bass, introduced by the authorities as sport fish, found in all reservoirs, has had serious detrimental impact on existing fish species there.
  • Cichlasoma urophthalmus- Mayan Cichlid, occurs in ponds, reservoirs, tidal rivers, mangroves, and in the sea along the coasts.
  • Geophagus surinamensis- Eartheater, in McRitchie reservoir Vieja synspila-
  • Red-Headed Cichlid, in Jurong lake and Pandan canal Apistogramma sp.-
  • Ram/Dwarf Cichlid, in Nee Soon swamp forest
  • Tilapia buttikoferi- Zebra Tilapia, in Jurong lake and Lower Seletar reservoir Etroplus suratensis-
  • Green Chromide, found in tidal canals, mangroves, and in some ponds and reservoirs.
  • Pacu- in some reservoirs
  • Clarias gariepinus- giant african walking catfish, found in many places now, occurs in fresh and brackish waters. May have contributed to the decline of native catfish species in the Pandan canal.
  • Chitala sp.- Knife fish, in Jurong lake and Lower Seletar reservoir.
  • Cichlasoma trimaculatum hybrids- found in many canals and reservoirs.

From: David Singleton
Date: 6/08/2004
Fish sighted: Clownknife
Location: Scioto river, Columbus Ohio

I was kind of shocked to see, while walking my dogs by the river, a clown knife. I didn't really think that it belonged in the Scioto so I did catch it and take it home to my own aquarium where it is doing very well. After fishing with a bucket for the first one, I then discovered 2 more, but I was unable to catch the others.

From: Greg W.
Date: 5/31/2004
Fish sighted: Walking Catfish, Weather Loach
Location: Florida

In the summer of 2002 I was working at Capital One in Tampa. This campus was built in late 1990s over a previously swampy area. Much of the swamp area was preserved and the building code required connected retention ponds built all around. When it rained and stormed suddenly (common in Florida) we noticed many gray slimy creatures jumping out of the street drains and wriggling around on the asphalt. They looked like flat headed catfish with eel bodies. I caught one and put it in my fish tank where it's grown a lot. I did much research and ruled out snakehead catfish and weather loach; it is a walking catfish. It has jumped out of the tank twice and wriggled across the floor leaving a slimy trail. Check this aerial photo of Capital One (circle of buildings w/ trees in preserved swamplands) then click the "topo map" (upper left dropdown menu) to see 1990 topographical survey when was still pristine swampland. terraserver

From: V.S. Basheer
Date: 12/08/2003
Fish sighted: Clarias gariepinus
Location: Periyar river, Kerala, India

Clarias gariepinus, African catfish caught from the natural water, Periyar river and now it is commonly available In fishermen's catch.

Date: 11/23/2003
Fish sighted: Suckermouth Catfish, (Pleco)
Location: Utah

I have seen some of those huge catfish in the saint johns, the ones that stick on the glass of your aquarium. I was fishing and all of a sudden there is like two huge ones about a foot and some swimming right under the surface of the water.

From: Tommy Sylvester
Date: 11/20/2003
Fish sighted: Some variety of Piranha, Pleco, goldfish
Location: Utah

I live in Salt Lake City. 25 miles from Salt Lake City is Utah Lake, and out of Utah Lake flows the Jordan River. This river runs through the entire city in dozens of communities. It stretches for approx.. 40 miles from the lake. I have caught a Piranha of some sort, quite large mind you, that not even my exotic pet vet was unable to accurately classify. I have caught freakishly large Goldfish that will surprise you on the end of a line. My friend caught a Pleco, and some sort of Cichlid that we could not identify. It actually looked like an Oscar that was maybe one or two generations removed from crossbreeding with a Small Mouth Bass. All of this may make you think that there is no other fish in this river beyond exotic species, which is not true, it is simply very accessible from many, many places. In many spots, you could easily throw a fish out the window to the river. This is a culmination of what I have experienced with one or two fishing buddies over the past five years in probably the oddest body of water I have ever fished.

From: Greg
Date: 03/01/2002
Fish sighted: NA
Location: Wisconsin

I live in Wisconsin, so released tropical fish are not a problem. One winter and they are done. I do want to stress that exotics are a danger. Sea lampreys almost wiped out the Great Lake lake trout and salmon populations; thank God they are no longer a threat. Now we are dealing with gobies, thought to be a reason for declining perch populations; and zebra mussels. Granted none of these problems were from pet owners, but that is not the point. Starlings, gypsy moths, fire ants, killer bees are all exotics. Look at Hawaii. Mongooses were brought in to kill rats, another exotic, and they have killed a lot of the birds. Pigs have reverted to a feral stage and done incredible damage. In other words, don't an idiot. Sell or give your fish away if you are tired of them. If you have to kill it, so be it. So you throw it in a glass of ice water, big deal. I guess that placing the fish into a container of water and tossing in an Alka-Seltzer. The carbon dioxide will suffocate it.

From: Doug r
Date: 06/03/2002
Fish sighted: lg. green turtle in f/w pond
Location: off pawcatuck river, RI

large green turtle maybe hawksbill (probably green though) sea turtle about 2 1/2 feet across locked inland in fresh water pond ..... pretty neat I think

From: Robby
Date: 07/31/2002
Fish sighted: Redbellied Pacu
Location: TX

I caught a 2.145lb. Redbellied Pacu. It is an all tackle record & lake record. I caught it on 7/25/02 on a throw line using a grasshopper for bait.

From: Wyatt H.
Date: 07/30/2002
Fish sighted: Rio grande cichlid
Location: Bayou St. John, LA.

I routinely catch Rio Grande cichilds while fly fishing in Bayou St. John, which runs literally straight thru New Orleans. There appears to be a large breeding population in most of the canals and bayous south of lake pontchartrain.

From: Mark Reynolds
Wildlife Management Specialist
Date: 12/07/2002
Fish sighted: Oscars, Jack Dempsey, other cichlid
Location: FL

I wish that I could post pictures. Unfortunately I don't have any. Based on what I saw in terms of numbers of these fish (oscars and dempseys), it looked more like a local pet shop based on the number of exotics I saw. There were still some natives present when I saw this area several years ago. Unfortunately, a great many people who visit the Everglades don't even realize that these aren't the native fish!!

From: Michelle Holt
Date: ?????
Fish sighted: Pond Goldfish and Koi
Location: Washington

I used to live up in Omak Washington and during the summer my whole family would visit Conconelly lakes area. I have seen Orange fish supposedly goldfish or Koi that were released into the upper lake. The one I saw was about 2 feet long. The rumor I heard was someone had a pond by the lake and either turned the fish loose or a flood washed the fish into the lake. I also watched some children with nets at the lake shore catching babies and putting them in aquariums. This lake is out of the way but well worth the trip to fish for bass and trout, with great camp grounds.

From: Kory
Date: ?????
Fish sighted: bettas, goldfish, livebearers
Location: Colorado

I was walking along a stream nearSimon lake and I saw all sorts of tropical fish in the shallow water. I later learned that it had been used as a human waste dump before and the tropical fish I saw were probably flushed down a toilet. This proves that trhat is not a good idea either

Information was graciously provided by the Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Program and the U.S. Geological Survey. Please click on their logos for much more information.
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