Iowa DNR
River & Stream Biological Monitoring
Fish and Benthic Macroinvertebrate Surveys
Physical Habitat Assessments

Sauger Sander canadensis

Percidae (Perches)
Trophic Class
Top Carnivore
Is Exotic to Iowa?
Is Lithophilous Spawner?
Is Hybrid?
State Listing Status
Not Listed
Assessment Program Statistics

This species was found at 20 bioassessment sites, 0 rapid fish bioassessment sites, 8 fisheries assessment sites, and 1 fisheries presence-only assessment site. In total, it was collected at 29 distinct sites, or 2.3% of the 1250 total sites monitored by the bioassessment program. It is the 76th most commonly collected species.

The Sauger was collected in 25 bioassessment sampling sessions and 8 fisheries assessment sessions. It was present in 0 rapid bioassessment sessions and 1 presence-only session.

The biological assessment program has collected a total of 98 individual Sauger specimens, ranking it the #91 most collected fish.

Species Characteristics

Long and cylindrical body, usually olive-gray. The back is crossed with 3 to 4 dark saddles, which extend down the sides. The white color of the belly extends to the tip of the tail, but the coloration does not spread out at the end of the tail and form a definite white tip as it does on Walleye. There are 2 or 3 rows of black dots on the first dorsal fin and a large black blotch at the base of the pectoral fin. There are 17 to 19 rays in the dorsal fin and 11 or 12 in the anal fin. The lateral line has 85 to 91 scales. About 15 rows of scales cover the cheeks. It does not reach the size of Walleye, seldom exceeding 2- to 4-pounds.

Species Distribution Map