(Lake Erie, Wild-caught)
Yellow perch in Lake Erie has recovered well from previous overfishing and other human impacts. In comparison, populations in Lake Huron and Lake Ontario remain depleted.
Lake Perch, Ned, Yellow Ned, Redfin, Ringed, Raccoon Perch
Environmental Defense Fund has issued a health advisory for yellow perch due to high levels of PCBs.
Yellow perch is found in lakes across the U.S. and Canada. Commercial fisheries for yellow perch exist throughout the Great Lakes, but the majority (85%) is caught in Lake Erie.
As with many Great Lakes species, yellow perch was impacted dramatically in the 1900s by habitat loss (particularly spawning habitat), invasive non-native species and overfishing.
Thanks to careful management and its tough, resilient nature, yellow perch has rebounded in Lake Erie. Less is known about the populations of yellow perch in Lake Huron and Lake Ontario. In these lakes, yellow perch is food for cormorants, which have made a dramatic comeback as water quality improved in the Great Lakes .
Until more is known about the combined impacts of the fishery and the cormorants, yellow perch from Lake Huron and Lake Ontario is recommended as a "Good Alternative," with the "Best Choice" being yellow perch from Lake Erie.