Species Information




Fishhook water flea
Cercopagis pengoi

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History

• Fishhook water flea was first found in North America in 1998 in Lake Ontario


Characteristics

Fishhook water flea:

• Aggressive, predatory zooplankton that preys on smaller zooplankton
• Long tail spine with up to three pairs of barbs near its end
• Head is essentially composed of a single, large eye


Habitat

Fishhook water flea: 

• Estuarine habitats, lakes, marine habitats, wetlands
• Tolerates wide range of salinity and temperature


Known Distribution in the Northeast

Fishhook water flea: 

• New York and Great Lakes region
• Native to Europe and Asia


Impacts

Fishhook water flea: 

• A voracious predator that eats smaller zooplankton; competes with native fish and invertebrates that eat zooplankton
• Interferes with fisheries by clogging nets and fishing gear