Perch (Perca fluviatilis)

loading
Perch with dorsal fin up
loading
Loading more images and videos...

Perch fact file

Perch description

KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassActinopterygii
OrderPerciformes
FamilyPercidae
GenusPerca

The perch (Perca fluviatilis) is a distinctive fish, with a deep greenish body marked with dark vertical bands, and the dorsal fin is stiffened with spines. The tail and anal fins are orange and the gill-covers are tipped with a sharp spine. The erect dorsal fin has a noticeable black spot at the rear.

Size
Body length: up to 25 cm
Weight
up to 4 kg
Top

Perch biology

Perch live in schools, often mixing with other species of fish, usually in the top 50 metres of water. Spawning takes place in April, the very sticky eggs being produced in bands. Females twine these bands around submerged vegetation or among rocks while the males follow her and fertilise the eggs.

The young fish hatch after about three weeks and remain amongst the egg bands until the yolk sac is exhausted. They then venture into more open water and feed on planktonic animals. As they grow they begin to shoal together close to the bank. Males mature when they reach the length of seven to eight centimetres, females when they are ten centimetres.

Top

Perch range

The perch is found over most of Europe, except in Spain, Italy or Greece. It is also found across northern Asia and Siberia as far as the Kolyma River. It has been introduced to a number of other countries.

You can view distribution information for this species at the National Biodiversity Network Gateway.
Top

Perch habitat

This species prefers slow-moving rivers, deep lakes and ponds where it stays close to patches of vegetation and submerged objects. Perch require well-oxygenated water to survive.

Top

Perch status

The perch is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List (1).

IUCN Red List species status – Least Concern

Top

Perch threats

Apart from pollution to their water bodies or rivers, perch do not appear to be a widely threatened species.

Top

Perch conservation

In parts of its range, perch are a commercial fish, caught with seine and stake-nets. In the UK, it is mainly a sport fish, much prized for its fighting qualities when hooked. Perch may be caught throughout the coarse angling season (16 June to 14 March). In some of the countries where it has been introduced it is considered a pest species.

There may be further information about this species available via the National Biodiversity Network Gateway.
View information on this species at the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre.
Top

Authentication

This information is awaiting authentication by a species expert, and will be updated as soon as possible. If you are able to help please contact:
arkive@wildscreen.org.uk

Top

Glossary

Planktonic
Aquatic organisms that drift with water movements; may be either phytoplankton (plants), or zooplankton (animals).
Top

References

  1. IUCN Red List (February, 2011)
    http://www.iucnredlist.org/
X
Close

Image credit

Perch with dorsal fin up  
Perch with dorsal fin up

© Brian Bevan / www.ardea.com

Ardea wildlife pets environment
59 Tranquil Vale
London
SE3 0BS
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0) 208 318 1401
ardea@ardea.co.uk
http://www.ardea.com

X
Close

Link to this photo

ARKive species - Perch (Perca fluviatilis) Embed this ARKive thumbnail link ("portlet") by copying and pasting the code below.

Terms of Use - The displayed portlet may be used as a link from your website to ARKive's online content for private, scientific, conservation or educational purposes only. It may NOT be used within Apps.

Read more about

X
Close

MyARKive

MyARKive offers the scrapbook feature to signed-up members, allowing you to organize your favourite ARKive images and videos and share them with friends.

Play the Team WILD game:

Team WILD, an elite squadron of science superheroes, needs your help! Your mission: protect and conserve the planet’s species and habitats from destruction.

Conservation in Action

Which species are on the road to recovery? Find out now »

Help us share the wonders of the natural world. Donate today!

Blog