Leuciscus leuciscus


Photo credit:  Paul McLoone


Habitat: Dace primarily inhabits fast flowing water systems, although it is also found in lowland rivers and lakes.


Description: Dace is a relatively small cyprinid fish, generally not living for more than ten years. The dace has a dorso-ventrally flattened symmetry, which makes it suited to fast flowing water. The flanks are silver, darkening to a bluish green along the back.


Origin and Distribution: Introduced from Britain.


Impacts: The most pressing of the threats posed by dace is the impact on native salmonids. Dace, trout and salmon have similar habitat preferences and all spawn over gravels in fast flowing water. Efforts to create and improve breeding grounds for salmonids in the Munster Blackwater have been hampered by dace moving onto the newly introduced gravels at spawning times.


How did it get here? In 1889 anglers river fishing on the Munster Blackwater released a number of dace and roach, which were being held as live bait.


Where is it found in Ireland? Populations in Munster and Leinster. Dace is present in the Shannon system.


See the National Invasive Species Database for more information on the distribution of this species in Ireland. 


Prevent Spread:

  • Do not introduce non native fish species.
  • Do not move species of fish from one waterbody to another.
  • Do not use live bait in river systems.
  • Report all sightings.
Invasive Species Ireland

Invasive Species Ireland