Coarse Fishing in Spain by Philip Pembroke

Appendices to 'The Essential Guide to Coarse Fishing in Spain'

A-Z of Spain's freshwater fish species l Spain's significant endemic fish species l Biodiversity of Freshwater Fish in Spain l Further fishing locations found in Castilla La Mancha

 

A-Z of Spain's freshwater fish species

A more complete list of fish species found in Spain – than limited space allows in my title ‘The Essential Guide to Coarse Fishing in Spain’.


→ FISH SPECIES

(V = vulnerable, T = threatened, N = native, * = introduced species, E = endemic, found nowhere else, Cat = Catalonia, Eusk = Basque region, Gal = Galicia)

alburno*: bleak (alburnos alburnos)
aguja de río: Black-striped pipefish (Syngnathus abaster), Catalan name is Agulleta de riu, can tolerate margins of salt lakes for example, close to Torrevieja (N)
alosa: (N) Twaite shad (Alosa fallax) Cat. Saboga vera, Eusk. Astouna, Gal. Saboga.
anguila: eel(Anguilla anguilla) Eusk. Aingira, Gal. Anguia, irsa,  also known as A. catarrojina, A. fartona, A. maresa, A. pastorenca, A. pugaron, A. Europa (N)
bagre: Common (European) chub (leuciscus cephalus) (N)
barbo: barbel
barbo cabecicorto: Smallhead Barbel (Barbus microcephalus) (N) (T)
barbo de cola roca:  Orange Barbel (Barbus haasi) (T) (E)
barbo comiza: Iberian barbel (Barbus comizo) (T) (N)
barbo común: Boca Barbel or Snouted Iberian barbel (Barbus bocagei) (N)
barbo gitano: gypsy barbel (Barbus sclateri) (N)
barbo de Graells:  Graell’s Barbel (Barbus graellsii) (E)
barbo de montaña: Mediterranean Barbel  (Barbus meridionalis) (N)
barbo Mediterráneo: Guiraonis Barbel  (Barbus guiraonis) (T) (E)
bermejuela: Galician or Red Roach (Chondrostoma arcasii), nase species found in Duero River basin. Cat. Madrilleta. Gal. Peixe Escalo. Eusk. Errutilo hegatsgorria (T) (N)
blacbás* (pronounced blasbas): American largemouth Black bass (Micropterus salmoides)
blica*:  Silver bream (Blicca bjoerkna)
bobi: Rock Goby (Gobius paganellus) (N)
boga de río: Iberian Nase (Chondostroma polylepis) (N)
boga del Guadiana: Wilkomm’s Nase, (Chondostroma wilkommii) also known as Guadiana Nase(. Also found in Odiel, Guadalquivir, Guadalete, Guadiaro and Guadalhorce river basins, and in Portugal. (T) (N)
boga del Duero: Duerien Nase (Chondrostoma duriense) (T) (N)
bogardilla: dace or chub species (Iberocypris palaciosi) (T) (E)
bordallo:  dace/chub species (Leusiscus carolitertii) (N)
brema blanca*: white bream (Blicca bjoerkna)
cacho: Pyrenean dace or Iberian chub (Leusiscus pyrenaicus) (N)
cacho:  European chub (Leusiscus cephalus) Cat. Bagra, Eusk. Katxoa, Gall. Peixe de rio, Escalo (N)
cachuelo: pint-sized carp(Squalius pyrenaicus) (N)
calandino: Calandino roach (Leusiscus alburnoides) (T) (N)
cangrejo*: American red crayfish (Austropotamobius pallipes)
carpa*: common carp (Cyprinus carpio) Eusk. Zamo arrunta
carpa de espejo*: Mirror carp (Cyprinus carpio) Cat. Carpa, Eusk. Zamo arrunta, Gal. Carpa. Sometimes referred to as “Raza de Galitzia”
carpin*: Crucian carp (Carassius carassius) Cat. Carpi, Eusk. Zamo txikia
carpin dorado*: Gold fish (Carassius auratus) Cat. Carpi daurat, Eusk. Zamo eguski txikia
cavilat: Common bullhead (Sculpin) (cottus gobio) (N)
chantito *: Chameleon cichlid (Australoheros facetus)
colmilleja:  Marsh/Spined loach (Cobitis taenia) Cat. Rabosa (T) (N)
coto común: Bullhead (Cottus gobio) Cat. Cavilat (N)
doadrio: Iberian Carpdace (Iberocypris palaciosi) (E)
dorado: goldfish (Carassius auratus auratus) also known as pez rojo
dorada: gilt-head bream (Sparus aurata)
escardinio/gardí*: rudd (Scardinius erythrophtha) Cat. Gardi
espinoso: Stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) Cat. N Espinós, Eusk. Arrain hiruarantza, Gal. Espiñeiro (N)
esturíon, Sollo: sturgeon (Acipenser sturio) Esturión común, Cat. Esturío, Eusk. Gaiztaka, Gal. Sollo Rei, fiaile: mummichog (T) (N)
fartet común: Iberian toothcarp (Aphanius Iberus) (T) (N)
fraile: or Blenio, (Salaria fluviatilis) freshwater blenny (N)
fúndulo*: Mummichog (Fundulus heteroclitus)
galúa blanca: Sharpnose Grey mullet (Liza saliens) or leaping mullet. Other names: Galúa negra, Ilisa de cap giquet, Ilisa fusany, Catalan – Llissa fusany (N)
gambusino*: mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis)
gambusia*: Eastern mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis) Cat. Gambússia
gobio*: gudgeon (Gobio gobio) Cat. Gobi
ilissa calua negra: Thinlipped Grey mullet (Liza ramado) other names -
Capiton, Galupe, Ilisa aguda, Ilisa cap plá, Lisa, Lizarra, Morragute, Mujol, Mule, Muxo, Sama, Yama,  Catalan – Cap-pla, Llisa de cap pla (N)
ilissa dorado: Golden Grey mullet (Liza aurata) other names – Alise, Dabeta, Galupe, Iliça, Ilissa, Lisa, mule , Lizarda, Muxo salton. Catalan – Galta roig
ilissa lobarrera: Flathead grey mullet (Mugil cephalus) or Striped Grey mullet, other names – Mule , Albur, Bullûa, Cabeçut, Cabezudo, Cachamba, Capitán, Galupe, Iliça de cap gros, Iliça sabado, Illissa lobarrera, Lisa, Lisa común, Lisa pardete, Lizarra, Mugil, Mugil común, Muxo, Pardete, Catalan – Llissa Llobarrera.(N)
ilissa morruda: Boxlipped Grey Mullet (Oedalechilus labeo) – Caluga  (N)
jarabugo: Spanish minnow (Anaecypris hispanica) (T) (N)
joell/pejerrrey: Big scale silverside – (Atherina boyeri) (N)
lamprea de arroyo: Brook lamprey (Lampetra planeri)
lamaprea de río: River lamprey (Lampreta fluviatilis) Cat. Llampresa de riu, Eusk. Itsas lamproia, Gal. Lampreia (N)
lamprea marina: Sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus)
lamprehilla: spined loach type
lamprehuela: Lamprehuela loach (Cobitis paludica) also known as Colmilleja (T) (N)
lobo de río:  Stone loach (Noemacheilus barbatulus) also known as Locha de roca and Pez lobo (N)
loina: Arrigon / Júcar Nase (Chondostroma arrigonis) (T) (N)
loina de Turia or Madrilla: Turia nase (Chondostroma turiense) (T) (E)
loina del Ebro or Madrilla: bleak type Spanish Nase (Chondostroma miegii) (N)
lubina: European Sea Bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) Cat. Llobarro, Eusk. Lupina arrunta, Gal. Robaliza (N)
lucio*: pike (Esox lucius) Cat. Llui de riu, Eusk. Lutxo arrunta
lucio perca*: zander (Sander lucioperca)
madrilla: French nase (Chondrostoma toxostoma) Cat-Bagre, Eusk – Loina txikia (V) (N)
muble: Thicklipped Grey mullet (Chelon labrosus) other names – Lisa, Catalan – Llissa vera, Navarra – Corcón O Lisa (N)
pardilla: mini-carp (Iberochondrostoma lemmingii) nase sub species, found in Ruidera lakes (V) (N)
pejerrrey: Mediterranean Sandsmelt (Atherina mochon) Cat. Asset, Jovell, Eusk. Abixoi txikia, Gal. Pión (N)
perca*: perch (Perca fluviatilis) Eusk. Perka.
perca americana*: American largemouth Black bass
pescadilla: whiting (Merluccius merluccius)
pez gato*: Black bullhead (catfish) (Ameiurus melas)
pez rojo*: Goldfish (Carassius auratus) Cat. Peix roig, Eusk. Urre bermella
pez sol / perca-sol*: Bluegill Sunfish aka pumpkinseed fish (Lepomis gibosus)
róbalo: sea bass
raboseta:  Spined  loach type (Cobitis paludica) found in Ruidera lakes and Albufera de Valencia (V) (N)
reo: Sea Trout (Salmo Trutta fario) Trucha marina, Cat. Truita de mar, Eusk. Itsas Amuarraina, Gal. Reo (N)
rodeo: Bitterling (Rhodeus sericeus)
rutilo*: roach (Rutilus rutilus)
sábalo: Allis shad (Alosa alosa) Cat. Guerxa, Eusk. Kodaka, Gal. Samborca (N)
saboga: Twaite shad (Alosa fallax) (N)
salmón del Pacífico*: rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)
salvelino*/Trucha de Fontana*: Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) Cat. Truita de rierol, Eusk. Amuarrain Kanadiarra, Gal. Truita
samarugo: Valèncian toothcarp (Valencía hispanica) Cat. Samaruc (N)
siluro*: Wels catfish (Silurus glanis) Cat. Silur, Eusk. Silurua
tenca: tench (Tinca tinca) Eusk. Tenka (N)
tenca dorada: Gold Tench (Tinca tinca) Cat. Tenca daurada, Eusk. Tenka eguski (N)
trucha arco iris*: rainbow trout (Salmo gairdnieri) Cat. Truita irisada, Eusk. Amurrain ortzadarra, Gal. Troita arcoiris
trucha común parda: Brown trout (Salmo trutta fario) Cat. Truita de riu, Truita comuna, Eusk. Ibai Amuarraina, Gal. Troita (V) (N)

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Spain's significant endemic fish species

Appendix one (The Essential Guide to Coarse Fishing in Spain): limited space in my guide book means that I’ve made this information available to my readers for free here.


There are more than 10 sub-species of nase found in Spain. Today their unique diversity is under threat from destruction of habitat, pollution and competition from invasive species. Many sub-species of Nase may even have become extinct before scientists have had the opportunity to classify them.

Loina: Arrigon Nase (Chondostroma arrigonis) also known as Júcar Nase are endemic to the middle reaches of the Río Júcar located in eastern Spain, conservation status is critically endangered. A 3-month study of the Río Júcar basin conducted in 1995 found only 10 individual fish at one location. The nature of the main threat is introduced fish species.

Boga del duero: Duerien Nase (Chondostroma duriens) is native to the Río Júcar located in eastern Spain, conservation status is vulnerable.

Boga de río: Iberian nase (Chondostroma polylepis) is native to central Spain. Found on the Miño, Duero and Tajo river basins. Also found in Portugal. A long-lived species found in rivers and sometimes lakes. Algae and invertebrates form its diet. Spawning occurs in spring in shallow water, on gravel and sometimes on timber in the river. It is threatened due to the introduction of new fish species.

Bogardilla (Iberocypris palaciosi) A short-lived chub or dace species which occurs in rivers on the low plains: with little current and at high altitudes.      Threatened due to habitat destruction, pollution and the introduction of other species. Found in middle reaches of Río Guadalquiver in Andalusia.

Madrilla: French Nase (Chondostroma toxostoma) found only in the upper reaches of rivers and occasionally in mountain lakes Native to Spain and Portugal. Grows to a maximum size of 30cm. Conservation status is vulnerable.

Loina de Turia: or Madrilla- Turia Nase  (Chondostroma turiense) endemic to the Turia and Mijares Rivers located in eastern Spain. Conservation status is vulnerable.


A selection of Spain’s lesser-known but no less significant endemic fish species are mentioned here.  

Fartet común: Iberina toothcarp (Aphenius iberus) egg-laying, carnivorous fish: that is used for mosquito control. It occurs in swamps, lagoons and water bodies with little current. This short-lived species is now threatened throughout its entire range due to the introduction of the Eastern mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis) that has caused habitat destruction.

Jarabugo: Spanish minnow (Anaecypris hispanica) an endemic fish species to the Iberian Peninsula. Most of its distribution is within Spain and some in Portugal’s Guadiana River basin; it occupies less than 5,000 square kilometres. It has experienced a decline in population of more than 50% in ten years, and is under a new conservation program in Spain.  

The fragmented population is affected by the construction of dams that decimate its habitat, and is declining due to the effects of water extraction, pollution and competition from introduced fish species. The Jarabugo lives most of the time in small intermittent streams of the Guadiana River basin in shallow, colder water. It is a short-lived species (3 year lifespan) achieving a small size of less than 6 cm long. Reproduction takes place in April through May. It is a species with limited dispersal.

Colmilleja: Marsh loach (Cobitis paludia) found in Spain typically in Fuente del Roble, conservation status is vulnerable.

Lamprehuela: Lamprehuela loach (Cobitis calderoni) found in Portugal and Spain typically in the Arianzon Stream, conservation status is vulnerable

Pardila: Pardila Roach (Rutilus lemmingii) found in standing and slow flowing water in southeast Spain and Portugal. Reaches 20cm maximum length. Conservation status is vulnerable

Saramugo: València toothcarp (Valencia hispanica) restricted to six locations along the Mediterranean coastal area of Spain. It lives in marshes, wetlands and springs. This species has undergone a population decline of more than 80% in the past decade due to habitat destruction caused by urbanisation, agricultural pollution and the introduction of alien predator fish species. It is threatened by drought, habitat destruction, water extraction, domestic and agricultural pollution and introduction of the Eastern Mosquito Fish (Gambusia holbrooki)

Doadrio: Iberian Carp/dace (Iberocypris palaciosi) minnow type, endemic to Spain, found in a restricted part of the Guadalquiver River system. Maximum length is 20 cm. This is a mysterious fish, little is understood about its biology, conservation status is thought endangered.
 

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Biodiversity of Freshwater Fish in Spain

(Appendix two, 'The Essential Guide to Coarse Fishing in Spain'), not included in printed book version due to limited space.
 

Spain is not home to a large number of freshwater fish. There are no more than one hundred different species. A low number compared to many European countries but the fish it does have exhibit a higher number of sub species than is generally found elsewhere in Western Europe.

The strong biodiversity (a definition is given below) plays a pivotal role in the well-being of Spain’s varied freshwater ecosystems; rivers, natural lakes and reservoirs that in turn make a fundamental contribution to the quality of human life.

Nase represent a noteworthy example of the wide genetic diversity found among Spain’s freshwater fish fauna. Though small in stature and unfamiliar to many anglers; it occupies just as an important niche in Spain’s diverse natural environment as many larger more recognisable fish species.

Distinct sub-species of nase have evolved independently over millennia in isolated river systems. A new sub-species is discovered here every few years. There are at least ten separate types that may be caught by anglers in Spain (refer to appendix two).

Many small, isolated nase populations are coming under pressure for a variety of reasons. At least seven sub-species are under serious threat of extinction. Loss through hybridisation can be caused by the construction of new channels linking separate river basins.

For instance a canal constructed in south east Spain connecting the Júcar and Tajo-Segura river basins has allowed Iberian Nase to enter and out compete with Júcar Nase. The latter is endemic to Spain, it is found nowhere else, and its population has declined by more than 80% in the decade preceding 1995.

Barbel occupy an equally important place in Spain’s natural environment – they offer broader appeal to anglers. Anglers may fish for eight different sub-species. However their numbers have declined in many regions due to many different reasons. In some areas they face extinction altogether.

The Orange Barbel, known locally as Barbo de cola roja (Barbus haasi) or colirrojo is endemic to Spain. It is very scarce and possibly extinct. A Medio Ambiente (environment agency) report on March 15, 2000 claimed that the proposed dam construction at Salto de Jánovas in Huesca province (Aragón) probably dealt the deathblow.

Destruction of habitat plays a major part in damaging and reducing the biodiversity of Spain’s freshwater ecosystems and its wildlife. Andalusia’s slow growing Gypsy Barbel (Barbus sclateri) tends to hold up in small isolated water holes, called dry season refuges, during summer months of drought.

Dry season refuges have been decimated by water extraction for irrigation, and agricultural pesticide run off has contaminated the water that’s left.

The problem is made worse by invasive fish; non-native species like the tiny perca sol (Lepomis gibosus), originally from Central America, whose aggressive juveniles out-muscle barbel fry for limited food resources. In 2008 roughly one quarter of fish species found in Spain were found to be invasive.

Just under half of Spain’s freshwater fish are endemic this proportion is significantly greater than found in France and the United Kingdom. There is a strong chance that any fish species lost to Spain would also be lost to the world. So maintaining the wide genetic diversity of fresh water fauna found in Spain today represents such an important issue.

'A-Z of Spain's fresh water fish species' contains further examples of fish experiencing a decline in Spain.


What is Biodiversity? Biodiversity is crucial for solving environmental challenges for example, global warming. It is often defined by the variety of living organisms, the genetic differences among them, and the communities and ecosystems in which they occur.  

How do we measure biodiversity? By identifying new species, taking D.N.A. samples of plants and measuring their genetic diversity. Some plants have 2,300 more genes than others; some plants have 50 times as much D.N.A.  in one cell than humans in their entire body.

Biodiversity helps to explain how the fish anglers are likely to catch perform a vital function in maintaining Spain’s natural world.  It explains their distribution and abundance.

Genetic diversity is important for species to adapt, survive and evolve. For instance fish populations with wide genetic diversity have a higher level of fertility and maintain a stronger resistance to disease.

Those populations whose genetic diversity is threatened experience higher levels of infertility and disease that frequently lead to a decline in their overall numbers.
 

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Further fishing locations found in Castilla La Mancha


Embalse de Entrepeñas, (carp). U.K. angler Peter McEntire visited this lake in 2013. ‘My fishing trip was meant to be a couple of peaceful days before returning to Madrid, however my experience proved to be quite the opposite.

The man-made lake was recommended to me by a Spaniard who fished there before. He told me it was a good place to catch large carp. I was there for 2 days in September. I don't claim to be the best carp fisherman ever but I have caught carp to 25lbs in Spain before.

Like many of these reservoirs it is massive. In a lot of places (especially where the apartment was) the banks are very steep and as I was on my own I had of course to take the risk factors into consideration because I was fishing alone.
On my first day I was in an unsuitable location as there were too many boats and generally too much noise.

On the second day I travelled further by foot for about 30 mins to a much quieter location. But despite putting in maximum effort and staying until it was dark unfortunately I blanked again.
 
When I returned home I contacted the guy that recommended the lake to me and it seems I should have been fishing on the part of the reservoir where the river is: if only I had asked him exactly where I needed to fish?
 
I realise that fishing is not always the same as catching fish and perhaps I made it hard for myself. I never had a chance to pre-bait, something that has worked well for me in the past. I only took one take apart rod and basic tackle that I could fit into a standard suitcase.

In reality my two days there were meant to be taster for spending a week or so there some other time. I wish I had done a bit more research beforehand. Perhaps the best way for me to think about it is that it was a learning exercise. Anyway I take away some positives and at least the weather was nice.

Regarding the license I never really got to the bottom of whether you can buy it on-line, as in Catalonia. In my opinion it’s best to collect the licence yourself from the local Medio Ambiente office, however I was arriving on Saturday and leaving for Madrid the following Tuesday which didn’t leave me much time. A Spanish friend bought it on my behalf and I was able to collect it from a bar on the way back to my accommodation.

Directions: Just in case you decide to go there (or someone else asks for your advice) you can access the reservoir relatively safely beside the Repsol service station at Sacerdon. Warning: It is not advisable to take a non 4 wheel drive further as the dirt track on this side of the reservoir is very much unmade and littered with deep potholes.’

 


Map showing location for Embalse de Entrepeñas


El Tablazo, Reserva de Pesca, Río Júcar, Cuenca (trout to 4kg). Stock lake covering 8,000 square metres. Located next to a hotel. Any type of angling is allowed, including baits and floats. It’s a great place to practise fly-fishing because of the varied conditions the lake offers. A river enters via a waterfall at one end of the lake and flows out the other end. Three floating barrages are provided for anglers as well as a central island for casting into the current. There are deep holes and weedy zones. Orange streamers work well here.

This popular angling location is best visited during the week to avoid crowds. October through March there are far less visitors about but the centre is open only at weekends. Catching a large tagged trout that the authorities stock at the lake during low season will secure a prize e.g. one day’s free angling. Good luck!

Two-tier system: Pesca con muerte – 13 euros per day including first kilo of trout caught, thereafter 4.8 euros for every extra kilo of trout killed. Or Pesca sin muerte – 17 euros per day.

Directions: The city of Cuenca is 200km west of Valencia and 160km east of Madrid. From Cuenca head north 20km on CM2105 to Villalba de la Sierra. Address: El Tablazo, Camino de la Noria, s/n, Villalba de la Sierra (Cuenca). Tel/fax: 969 281 488.

Purchase your trout licence at: Delegación Provincial de Medio Ambiente in Cuenca, tel: 969 178 300. Minimum age is 14, minors up to 18 must seek permission from an adult. Over-65s qualify for a free licence.

For more information visit: http:// www.eltablazopescadeportiva.com

 

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