The emerald shiner (Notropis atherinoides) is a native minnow species in the Niagara River. As prey, it fuels the food web in the upper river, sustaining predatory fish (walleye, smallmouth bass, steelhead, yellow perch, muskie) and piscivorous migrating bird populations (common tern, common loon, mergansers) in the Niagara Flyway. In addition, the emerald shiner is the most important baitfish harvested locally, contributing to economic prosperity in the region. The health of the emerald shiner population, and the ability of these fish to successfully reproduce and migrate, has direct and significant regional, ecological and economic impacts.
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