Threespine Stickleback

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Gasterosteus aculeatus - Linnaeus, 1758
Threespine Stickleback

A widespread little fish in Arctic and temperate waters. Ellen Edmonson/Cornell University/NY Dept of Envir Conservation

[edit] Overview

Spread globally around the northern hemisphere in freshwater lakes and rivers, this species is also found in brackish estuaries and full saltwater.

Curiously, the marine Three-spined Stickleback grows larger (to 11 cm) and is heavily armored, while freshwater specimens are generally smaller (to 8 cm) and less body plating. See Reverse Evolution in Fish.

Family: Gasterosteidae

Other common name(s):

Native range:

Habitat: A bottom dweller along sandy or muddy shorelines with aquatic vegetation.

Maximum length: 11 cm (4 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 38 L (10 gal)

Water: Freshwater 4 °C (277 K, 39 °F) - 20 °C (293 K, 68 °F)

General swimming level: Bottom.

[edit] Feeding

Carnivore. Feeds on zooplankton, worms, crustaceans, insects, smaller fishes.

[edit] Special Care

Must be kept in cooler waters, requiring the use of a chiller in most homes.

[edit] Breeding/Propagation

Male sticklebacks use plant materials and a sticky substance from their own bodies to create nests with both an entrance hole and separate exit. When guarding eggs, the male becomes very aggressive in driving away potential predators.

Breeding colors of the males can be brilliant blue or green with a red or orange breast.

Text credit: JL
Facts about Threespine SticklebackRDF feed
Common name Threespine Stickleback  +
Family Gasterosteidae  +
Genus Gasterosteus  +
Maximum length 4 in  +
Minimum aquarium size 10 gal  +
Native range Northern Hemisphere  +, and North America  +
Specific name aculeatus  +
Swimming level Bottom.  +
Text credit JL  +
Water max temp 293 K (20 °C, 68 °F)  +
Water min temp 277 K (4 °C, 39 °F)  +
Water type Freshwater  +