Scardinius erythrophthalmus

Threats Status

Unwanted Organism

Common Name(s)





Rudd are commonly found in warm, eutrophic lakes but also in deeper, slow flowing rivers and streams. Highly tolerant of poor water quality conditions.


Rudd are a stocky fish with distinctive red fins and large, shiny scales that range from silver to pale orange (adults) in colour.

Similar Species

Could potentially be confused with goldfish (Carassius auratus).

Threat To Plants

Often referred to as the “possums of the waterways”, adult rudd are predominantly herbivorous and feed preferentially on native macrophytes. Rudd are prolific breeders, with females producing around 50,000 eggs per kilogram of body weight.


Thoughout the North Island especially Auckland and Waikato where it is still a sport fish within the Auckland/Waikato Fish and Game region), with isolated populations in Canterbury and Nelson.


Weight: normally <1kg; body length: normally <25cm

Year Introduced


Reason For Introduction

Coarse angling.

Colonisation History

A consignment of rudd imported into New Zealand in 1864 fortunately failed to survive. In 1967 an illegally imported private consignment of rudd was reared to adulthood and bred. The resulting juvenile fish were then deliberately and strategically introduced into a number of lakes and ponds in the Waikato. From there, rudd have since been progressively spread illegally around lakes, ponds and rivers throughout the North Island as well as Canterbury and Nelson.

Control Options

Netting, pond drainage, cube root powder.