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Michigan and the Great Lakes

Guide to Great Lakes Fishes

Gerald R. Smith

A comprehensive guide to more than fifty common fishes of the Great Lakes


The Great Lakes are home to an impressive variety of fish. The Guide to Great Lakes Fishes describes sixty-two of the region's most commonly found species, from giants like the sturgeon all the way down to the minnows and shiners, some of the Lakes' smallest residents.

Beautiful color illustrations accompany color photographs and line drawings to highlight distinguishing characteristics of each fish alongside quick facts about distribution, diet, behavior, and conservation status. Informative essays on the natural history, adaptations, and characteristics of Great Lakes fishes are also included, as well as detailed diagrams of the aquatic habitats and food chains within the Lakes. This is a must-have guide for every angler, fishery or wildlife professional, and conservationist. The paperback edition is printed on waterproof paper.

The University of Michigan Press worked in collaboration with Michigan Sea Grant on the development of this guidebook, the second in a series of books about the Great Lakes coast.

Gerald R. Smith is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan and Curator Emeritus of Fishes for the University of Michigan Museum of Zoology. He is editor of Fishes of the Great Lakes Region, Revised Edition.

Praise / Awards

  • "Just as people who go to a ballpark purchase programs to identify the players, people who go fishing in the Great Lakes will need this book to identify their catches. Smith is a long time, well-known student of these fishes, and his small book is easy to carry while fishing. Damstra's color illustrations of each species and the photographs of fishes likely to be confused with the species covered on each pair of pages are excellent."
    —D. Bardack, emeritus, University of Illinois at Chicago

Look Inside

Copyright © 2010, University of Michigan. All rights reserved.

News, Reviews, Interviews

Listen: Interview WAMU | 3/2/2010

Read: Review Midwest Book Review | 5/14/2010

Read: Review | 5/13/2010

Read: Review Detroit Free Press | 4/18/2010

Read: Review Fishing Guide | 4/14/10

Read: Review Heritage | 3/31/10

Read: Review Oakland Press | 12/3/2009

Media Kit

  • Author Photo .jpg. Author photo courtesy of John Megahan.
  • Photo 1 .jpg. Lake Sturgeon illustration by Emily S. Damstra.
  • Photo 2 .jpg. Lake Sturgeon photo courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
  • Photo 3 .jpg. Lake Sturgeon line illustration by Karen Klitz.
  • Photo 4 .jpg. Lake Sturgeon photo by Dave Brenner. 
  • Hi-Res Cover .jpg
  • Press Release .doc

Product Details

  • 5.5 x 9.
  • 136pp.
  • over 100 color photographs and numerous B&W illustrations.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Paper
  • 2010
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-03375-1

Add to Cart
  • $24.95 U.S.



  • Great Lakes, fish, conservation, biodiversity, fish species, Superior, Michigan, Erie, Huron, Ontario