An overview of North America's diminutive freshwater fish fauna Academic Article uri icon


  • Based on a review of the literature, we compile a table of North American freshwater fishes with maximum standard length (SL) less than or equal to 50 mm and information on size at sexual maturity. Using previously published criteria for miniature fishes (<26 mm maximum SL, or those that mature at SL <20 mm), we found evidence for seven miniature fishes on the North American continent: Elassoma alabamae, E. zonatum, Leptolucania ommata, Heterandria formosa, Megupsilon aporus, Cyprinodon macularius and Notropis saladonis, the smallest being E. alabamae (Spring Pygmy Sunfish, maximum size 25.5 mm SL). We compare the number of miniature species in North America to those from Africa, South Asia and South America and discuss patterns of distribution, habitat preference and imperilment amongst North America's smallest freshwater fishes. 2010 by Verlag Dr. Friedrich Pfeil,.

published proceedings

  • Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters

author list (cited authors)

  • Bennett, M. G., & Conway, K. W.

complete list of authors

  • Bennett, MG||Conway, KW

publication date

  • March 2010