Re: NANFA-- Schreckstoff (was Creek Chub Removal_

Todd Crail (
Tue, 9 Sep 2003 23:18:20 -0400

Do they also release Schreckstoff when just distressed, but uninjured?

Are these the hormones that angling bait additives/ fish attractant mimic?

----- Original Message -----
From: "Christopher Scharpf" <>
To: <>
Sent: Tuesday, September 09, 2003 10:42 PM
Subject: NANFA-- Schreckstoff (was Creek Chub Removal_

> > Is it fairly common for a wounded cyprinid to release something alerting
> > rest of the school?
> >
> > If so, is that only true of North American cyprinids as opposed to
> > S.E. Asian or African cyprinids or do cyprinids world wide do that??
> Minnows belong to a large and disparate superorder of fishes called
> Ostariophysi, which also includes suckers, loaches, catfishes, characins,
> knifefishes, and the electric eel, among others. One ostariophysan trait
> the ability to produce a chemical substance called Schreckstoff (from the
> German words for fright and stuff). When an ostariophysan fish is bitten
> a predator, special skin cells release Schreckstoff into the water. This
> sends a message to schoolmates and other closely related species to take a
> variety of escape actions.
> Some ostariophysan fishes have lost their ability to produce Schreckstoff
> for adaptive reasons. For example, piranhas do not release an alarm
> substance since many of their prey are ostariophysans, and it wouldn't
> sense for them to flee each time they bit into a fish.
/"Unless stated otherwise, comments made on this list do not necessarily
/ reflect the beliefs or goals of the North American Native Fishes
/ Association"
/ This is the discussion list of the North American Native Fishes Association
/ To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get help, send the word
/ subscribe, unsubscribe, or help in the body (not subject) of an email to
/ For a digest version, send the command to
/ instead.
/ For more information about NANFA, visit our web page,