VIDEO: When there are no trout in the spawning ground we see sticklebacks

Submitted by Looduskalender EN on Mon, 17.12.2018 - 10:26

Video recorded by Parabols, LK forum

English translation Liis

Estonian text posted 12.12.2018 


The video is a couple of years old. This year the water flow is extremely small and the water too muddy for recording a video



Ninespine stickleback    Luukarits    Pungitius pungitius    


The slim, spool-shaped sticklebacks have conspicuous spines on the back (dorsal) fin. There may be nine up to eleven of them, and in addition one on each ventral fin.

The thin peduncle or tail stem is noticeable. The lifetime of these small fish reaches up to three years. Most have a similar body length, five to six centimetres.

What do the sticklebacks do on the spawning ground? They are roe robbers, but these small fish don’t have the strength to get at the spawning nests that are already covered with gravel. They greedily go for the roe grains that have been washed out but these grains would go to waste one way or other anyway. Their operations in April and May when the trout fry hatch are much more damaging because the sticklebacks are strong enough to overpower these.

What more do they look for in the water? The larvae of buzzer midges and other animals living at the bottom of water bodies.

Suitable habitats for sticklebacks are shallow, spring-fed waters but the movements of these fish are quite unpredictable: they have been found in dug wells and according to information in literature even in drilled wells.

For fish of prey the slowly moving sticklebacks in turn are an important food source.

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