Lake Superior Fish

Fish art was done by Russell Habermann for the Minnesota Sea Grant Program (link takes you to the original Truly Superior Fish Gallery).  The haikus were all me.

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silver redhorse search / along the cobble bottom / for benthic delights

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leaden silver sides / northern-most of the minnows / lake chubs like it cold

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sucker-like minnow / opportunistic feeder / longnose dace abide

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small silvery fish / maybe a mimic shiner / best consult the key

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cylinder with fins / the aptly named round whitefish / called menominee

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fish of clear water / swimming on sandy substrate / schooling sand shiners

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the shortjaw ciscoes / hard to tell from their cousins / so many cisco kids

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slimy sculpins hop / moving across lake bottoms / waiting for their prey

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a spot on the tail / a key identifier / for spottail shiner

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iridecent scales / kin to the other ciscoes / kiyi live down deep

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prized for flavor / lake whiefish are often smoked / but would rather swim

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mid-water swimmers / it’s scaled sides shimmer and flash / a common shiner

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bloater chases shrimp / in vertical migration / up and down lake slopes

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creek chub tolerate – a wide range of conditions – testament to tough

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beautiful sucker / bright red fins, silvery body / the shorthead redhorse

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down, down, deep and cold / where sunlight can barely reach / live deepwater sculpins

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spawning under ice / voracious mouth with tail / deeply cool burbot

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ninespined stickleback / builds nest during breeding season / to protect the eggs

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lake trout recovered / kings of the unsalted sea / prowl the deep once more

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a glacial relic / in Superior’s waters / pygmy whitefish thrive

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ciscoes inhabit / the middle of the food chain / in fish eat fish world

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Johnny darter hunts / seeks chironomid larvae / among the gravel

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a redyed rock bass / rests among rocks and rubble / ready to rumble

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shaped like it’s flatware / wide flat head, thin peduncle / spoonhead sculpins skulk

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the longnose sucker / searching seeking sustenance / lake shore sand sifter

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neither trout nor perch / night time hunter of inverts / daylight troutperch hides

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hidden, mottled brown / waiting for a minnow to swim by / the walleye lunches

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green silver shimmer / schools swift change in direction / emerald shiners

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an ancient giant / stirs sand with protruding mouth / then lake sturgeon leaps

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hidden in the weeds / glides a toothsome predator / the northern pike lurks

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where cool water flows / white suckers can be found / scouring the rocks

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cold water beauty / coaxed from among the boulders / a brook trout rises

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schooling yellow perch / look for a tasty minnow / end up as sandwich

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brown flash in the weeds / tadpoles and minnows scurry / as smallmouth bass prowl

 

Cyprinidae (Minnows)
– Lake Chub (Couesius plumbeus)
– Creek Chub (Semotilus atromaculatus)
– Common Shiner (Luxilus cornutus)
– Emerald Shiner (Notropis atherinoides)
– Mimic Shiner (Notropis volucellus)
– Spottail Shiner (Notropis hudsonius)
– Sand Shiner (Notropis stramineus)
– Longnose Dace (Rhinichthys cataractae)

Catostomidae (Suckers)
– Longnose Sucker (Catostomus catostomus)
– White Sucker (Catostomus commersoni)
– Shorthead Redhorse (Moxostoma macrolepidotum)
– Silver Redhorse (Moxostoma anisurum)

Cottidae (Sculpins)
– Spoonhead Sculpin (Cottus ricei)
– Slimy Sculpin (Cottus cognatus)
– Deepwater Sculpin (Myoxocephalus thompsoni)

View from our hospital room

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