Re: NANFA-- fish sizes questioned

Christopher Scharpf (
Thu, 15 Aug 2002 18:20:50 GMT

> I too am curious how the bio-guys establish maximums for non-game
> fishes, though.

Voucher specimens, I would guess.

If you find a specimen that's larger than what's generally known, pickle it,
record collecting data, and send it off to either a taxonomic expert in that
particular taxa, or to the closest natural history museum that houses a fish
collection. Include a note that mentions that this specimen exceeds the
largest known size.

If you don't want to pickle the fish, pose the fish above a ruler and take a
photograph. This may not be as reliable as a voucher specimen, but
should indicate if a species exceeds a certain size.

It's not that the Peterson Field Guide -- or any other "Fishes of..." book -- is
wrong. It's just that it was written using the best available data. Science is
self-correcting. So don't be afraid to correct!

Chris Scharpf
/"Unless stated otherwise, comments made on this list do not necessarily
/ reflect the beliefs or goals of the North American Native Fishes
/ Association"
/ This is the discussion list of the North American Native Fishes Association
/ To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get help, send the word
/ subscribe, unsubscribe, or help in the body (not subject) of an email to
/ For a digest version, send the command to
/ instead.
/ For more information about NANFA, visit our web page,