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Tangerine Darter (Percina aurantiaca)

Tangerine Darter

Fish / Percina aurantiaca
Length Up to 7"
Conservation Status
Least Concern

This species will be viewable in our new Ridges to Rivers gallery, opening Spring 2023 in the River Journey building!

The Tangerine Darter is named for the bright orange coloring along its mid and lower body - particularly displayed by adult males during breeding season (typically May - June). It is rather large in size compared to other darter species. This species is most active in the early afternoon as it hunts for food in riverweed beds. It has also been observed rolling over small pebbles in search of prey. This species is only found in the Tennessee River drainage within the Appalachian Mountains. With such a limited range, the Tangerine Darter is vulnerable to to habitat degradation.

Upper Tennessee River drainage in Virginia, N. Carolina, Tennessee and Georgia
clear, fairly deep rocky pools in creeks and small rivers
aquatic insects
Tangerine Darter
A Tangerine Darter in an aquarium
Tangerine Darter
All Animals /


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