Carassius carassius 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Cypriniformes Cyprinidae

Scientific Name: Carassius carassius
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Crucian Carp

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-01-01
Assessor(s): Freyhof, J. & Kottelat, M.
Reviewer(s): Bogutskaya, N., & Smith, K. (IUCN Freshwater Biodiversity Unit)
Wide distribution but gradual and continuing extirpation in many water bodies, especially in Danube drainage and central Europe, for unknown reasons. Suspected to be due to competition with introduced C. gibelio in non-optimal habitats.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:North, Baltic, White, Barents, Black and Caspian Sea basins; Aegean Sea basin only in Maritza drainage; eastward to Kolyma drainage (Siberia); westward to Rhine and eastern drainages of England. Absent from North Sea basin in Sweden and Norway. In Baltic basin north to about 66°N. Widely introduced to Italy, England and France but possibly often confused with C. gibelio.
Countries occurrence:
Armenia (Armenia); Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France; Georgia; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Italy; Kazakhstan; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Moldova; Montenegro; Netherlands; Norway; Poland; Romania; Russian Federation; Serbia (Serbia); Slovakia; Slovenia; Sweden; Switzerland; Turkey; Ukraine; United Kingdom; Uzbekistan
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Habitat:
Usually restricted to densely vegetated backwaters and oxbows of lowland rivers. Also in small well vegetated lakes and channels. Tolerates high summer temperatures and very low oxygen concentrations in summer and under ice cover. Able to survive in almost completely frozen water or almost-dry habitats by burying itself in mud. Spawns in dense submerged vegetation.

Lives about 10 years. Males reproduce for the first time at three years, females at four years in central and eastern Europe, at two years in southern Europe. Spawns in May-July at temperatures above 18°C. Individual females spawn with several males. Males follow ripe females, often with much splashing. Females spawn 3-5 times during a season. Eggs are sticky and are attached to water plants. Omnivorous; feeds all day but mostly at night on plankton, benthic invertebrates, plant material and detritus. Seems to be a weak competitor, usually absent from waters with rich ichthyofauna and abundant predatory species. Very abundant in the absence of other fish species. High-bodied, fast-growing individuals in habitats with predatory fish, more elongate in habitats without predatory fish.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Introduced C. gibelio.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No information.

Classifications [top]

5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.1. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls)
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.7. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
8. Invasive & other problematic species & genes -> 8.1. Invasive non-native/alien species -> 8.1.2. Named species (Carassius gibelio)
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.3. Indirect species effects -> 2.3.2. Competition

♦  Food - human
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Sport hunting/specimen collecting
 National : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

IUCN. 2008. 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Available at: (Accessed: 5 October 2008).

Kottelat, M. and Freyhof, J. 2007. Handbook of European Freshwater Fishes. Publications Kottelat, Cornol, Switzerland.

Szczerbowsk, J.A. and Szczerbowski, A.J. 2002. in: Banarescu, P. & Paepke, H.-J. (eds.) The freshwater fishes of Europe. Vol. 5/II. Cyprinidae 2. Part III: Carassius to Cyprinus. Aula, Wiebelsheim.

Citation: Freyhof, J. & Kottelat, M. 2008. Carassius carassius. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T3849A10117321. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
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