Latin name

Scardinius erythrophthalmus

Other names

European rudd; German: rotfeder; Italian: scardola.


The rudd has a cylindrical shape and a deep body. It has a moderately forked tail and an upturned mouth. The scales are well defined, the back is dark brown and the sides are golden brown tapering to a white belly. The pectoral, pelvic, and anal fins are reddish-orange, while the dorsal and caudal fins are dusky. The rudd has 8-9 dorsal rays and 10-11 anal rays, and the eyes are red or have a red spot. The cudd can be confused with the roach, but its pectoral fins are not reddish-orange and its body is more silvery. It is similar in appearance to the golden shiner, but differs in having a scaly ventral keel.


Rudd is distributed from Western Europe to the Caspian and Aral Sea basins; it is absent from Russia and has been introduced into the United States.


Ponds, canals, lakes, and slow-moving rivers with muddy bottoms are the main habitats of rudd. They spend a lot of time in or along the edges of vegetation.


The maximum size of a rudd is 4 to 5 pounds, although such fish are rare. A rudd weighing two pounds is usually considered large.

Life history and Behavior

Spawning occurs in weeds in the spring when the rudd hatch numerous sticky eggs instead of building a nest. The fry are kept in schools and congregate in large groups, providing food for many predators. As adults, rudd remain schooling fish. Their schools usually consist of similarly sized individuals.

Food and feeding habits

Rudd feed on snails, aquatic insects and small fish and spend a lot of time in vegetation thickets. They feed mainly on the surface, but also on the bottom and at mid-depth. They take food from the surface or underside of aquatic plants.


No information

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Cypriniformes
Family Cyprinidae
Genus Scardinius
Species S. erythrophthalmus
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Pelagic
Life span, years 19
Maximum body weight, kg 2.1
Maximum length, cm 51
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people No information
Way of eating Predator

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