Yellow Perch (Perca flavscens) belong to the largest order of fish: the Perciformes which include 9,200 species, 80% of which are marine, however, the family Percidae they belong to consists entirely of freshwater species of the temperate and subarctic climates of the northern hemisphere. Walleye and Sauger are also members of the same family.
Neither adult cares for the eggs or larvae. The eggs hatch after eleven to 27 days incubation depending upon the temperature. The larvae feed on small zooplankton and then start including insect larvae, (particularly mayflies) and eventually small fish including other Yellow Perch.
Since they travel in schools, sometimes they end up being caught in bunches. They feed not only the anglers but are important forage fish for Walleye, Sauger and Smallmouth Bass. While the Yellow Perch are not one of the more commonly caught fish in Bighorn Lake, anglers should not be surprised to find one on the end of their line.
Did You Know?
Long before the Bighorn River was tamed by the Yellowtail Dam, the roiling waters through the canyon were feared. During spring snowmelt, the water turned into a raging torrent, a combination of whirlpools, rapids, and eddies. Conversely, the river through the canyon had a reputation for being placid by late summer, when dry heat and lack of rainfall turned it into a sedate stream. More...