State Fish

Several years ago, the Iowa Chapter began a discussion to select one or more official State Fish of Iowa. Iowa is now one of only 3 states without a designated state fish (the others are Indiana and Ohio). 

All native species were considered, but four species gained member support with video "pitches" (see below).

During the 2022 Annual Business Meeting, the membership indicated a willingness to consider two State Fish: one recreationally valuable species and one nongame species. A vote was conducted during 2022 to finalize the species selection, after which the Chapter will develop a proposition for the legislature to consider and hopefully adopt during 2023.


The Iowa Chapter members voted to have only one State Fish, and that the fish species should be the Iowa Darter!

To learn more about the Iowa Darter, check out these resources:

Also, a special thank you to Mike Hawkins, Kim Hawkins and Darcy Cashatt for the video they put together to explain why they supported the Iowa Darter for the Iowa State Fish. 

Videos of the Contenders