A genetic variant of the more common Rainbow Smelt (Osmerus mordax), this small-bodied population are not found anywhere else in the world but within Lake Utopia, southwest New Brunswick, and spawns only in three of this lake’s numerous feeder streams. This limited dispersal range has prompted the Federal Government to declare this sub-species as “Threatened” under the Species at Risk Act. As the name suggests, these rare fish are smaller than their cousins (10cm long verses 13cm) and are somewhat dissimilar in their gill structure. Their slender body is olive to pale green with a silvery stripe along the side, while freshly caught smelt have a purple, blue, and pink iridescent side and silvery belly, hence the common name “Rainbow” smelt. Although most Rainbow Smelt tend to migrate from salt to freshwater for spawning, this dwarf population does not move out to the coasts saltwater to complete its growth/maturation phase. The Dwarf’s diet consists mostly of microscopic animals and algae. 

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