Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Cypriniformes
(Carps) > Cyprinidae
(Minnows or carps) > Cyprininae
Etymology: Carassius: Latinization of , karass, karausche, European crucian carp (Ref. 45335). More on author: Bloch.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; brackish; benthopelagic; pH range: 7.1 - 7.5; dH range: 12 - ?; potamodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range - m (Ref. ), usually - m (Ref. ). Temperate; 10°C - 20°C (Ref. 2059); 62°N - 35°N, 10°W - 155°E
Europe and Asia: usually considered as native from central Europe to Siberia or introduced to European waters from eastern Asia. Clear and definite data on original distribution in Europe are not available due to introduction, confusion with Carassius auratus and complex modes of reproduction. At present, widely distributed and commonly stocked together with Cyprinus carpio which is transported throughout Europe. Absent in northern Baltic basin, Iceland, Ireland, Scotland and Mediterranean islands.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 10.3, range 13 - ? cm
Max length : 46.6 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 88166); common length : 20.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 556); max. published weight: 3.0 kg (Ref. 556); max. reported age: 10 years (Ref. 59043)
Diagnosed from its congeners in Europe by having the following characters: body silvery-brown in color; last simple anal and dorsal rays strongly serrated; 37-52 gill rakers; lateral line with 29-33 scales; freed edge of dorsal concave or straight; anal fin with 5½ branched rays; and peritoneum black (Ref. 59043).
Inhabits a wide variety of still water bodies and lowland rivers, usually associated with submerged vegetation or regular flooding. Can strongly tolerate low oxygen concentrations and pollution (Ref. 59043). Lake dwelling individuals move into river mouths to avoid low oxygen water in winter (Ref. 39176). Feeding larvae and juveniles occur in high-complexity habitats as reed belts. Feeds on plankton, benthic invertebrates, plant material and detritus. Spawns in shallow, warm shores on submerged vegetation (Ref. 59043). Able to reproduce from unfertilized eggs (gynogenesis) (Ref. 41851). Life span reaches up to about 10 years (Ref. 59043). Eastern European or wild form of the goldfish (Ref. 1739).
Females spawn with several other species, for example Cyprinus carpio and Carassius carassius, but the eggs just develop without being actually fertilized resulting in a female only population (Ref. 2059). In Europe, populations considered as triploid and only females. But in some populations, it should be possible to find up to 25% of males which should be diploid (Ref. 40476). "There are also all-female populations in which all individuals are triploids. Triploids are sperm parasites of other cyprinid species such as Cyprinus carpio,
Rutilus rutilus and Abramis brama. Older individuals spawn earlier in season than younger ones. Males move to spawning sites before females. Males follow ripe females, often with much splashing. Sticky eggs are attached to water plants or submerged objects" (Ref. 59043).
Kottelat, M. and J. Freyhof, 2007. Handbook of European freshwater fishes. Publications Kottelat, Cornol and Freyhof, Berlin. 646 pp. (Ref. 59043)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 124695)
Threat to humans
Potential pest (Ref. 83969)
Fisheries: minor commercial
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5156 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01318 (0.01136 - 0.01530), b=3.04 (3.00 - 3.08), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 2.5 ±0.0 se; based on diet studies.
Generation time: 6.1 (4.7 - 6.1) years. Estimated as median ln(3)/K based on 21 growth studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.13; tm=1-4).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (51 of 100) .
Nutrients (Ref. 124155
): Calcium = 127 [46, 316] mg/100g ; Iron = 0.704 [0.322, 1.459] mg/100g ; Protein = 17 [16, 18] % ; Omega3 = 1.25 [0.56, 2.94] g/100g ; Selenium = 18.4 [5.6, 40.3] μg/100g ; VitaminA = 15.7 [4.8, 50.5] μg/100g ; Zinc = 1.04 [0.58, 1.92] mg/100g (wet weight); based on nutrient studies.