Thank you for visiting the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department website. NH Fish and Game



Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens)

Yellow perch



NH Conservation Status: Not listed


State Rank: Secure


Distribution: Yellow perch range from the Great Lakes and upper Mississippi valley, east to North Carolina, and north to Hudson Bay.


Description: Yellow perch have a long, somewhat laterally compressed body with a large head and mouth, which is filled with small needle-like teeth. It is usually golden yellow to green in color, with dark vertical bands.


Species commonly confused with: Walleye


Habitat: The yellow perch is found in ponds, lakes, and slow flowing rivers throughout New Hampshire. It is usually abundant in stands of aquatic vegetation along shorelines in the summer.


Yellow perch

Yellow perch vary in color from bright green to golden yellow. Select image for larger view.


Yellow perch

The yellow perch in this photo had recently consumed a frog under the ice. Select photo for larger view.

Life History: Yellow perch consume a wide variety of invertebrates and small fish species. Spawning takes place in the spring as water temperatures warm along the shorelines. Eggs are strewn in long ribbons over dead vegetation and the branches of fallen trees. Each female is followed by a group of males attempting to fertilize the eggs as they are extruded. Between 3,000 and 60,000 eggs are laid, depending on the size of the female. The abundance of yellow perch in most waters makes them an important forage species for many predators, including loons, otters, and largemouth bass.


Origin: Native


Conservation/Management: Yellow perch are common and widespread throughout New Hampshire.




  • Protecting shoreline vegetation and riparian buffers will help ensure healthy populations of yellow perch.