European Brook Lamprey

Eudontomyzon danfordiSimilar to river lampreys, this species is different as it is smaller, its teeth are always blunt and its roe is larger. The first dorsal fin is either merged with the second, or is separated from it with a small gap. As regards color, the two lampreys differ in the brook one’s back has more olive hue to the green. Its length is 20-40 cm.

The brook lamprey can be encountered in the same river systems the river lamprey inhabits, though as a rule in smaller rivers farther up from the sea. The entire lifecycle of it elapses in the river. It spawns mid-May to mid-June, with each female laying 1.5 thousand eggs on average. As fry, the brook lamprey gender distribution is approximately even, but during the metamorphosis, the female death rate is much higher. This leads to males prevailing in all spawning sites. It is peculiar as it is characteristic of other lamprey species lacking a parasitic phase. The European brook lamprey is of no commercial value. There were cases of severe poisoning by the soup with brook lampreys. In the single-cell cutaneous glands of the fish, there is the heat-resistant poison causing inflammation of the digestive tract.

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