Gambusia affinis


Family: Poeciliidae

Origin: North America

The gambusia is a silver and yellow streaked fish.
Even though they are short lived they breed several times a year with up to 50 offspring at a time.
Photo credit: Stephen Moore

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Aotea — Exclusion
  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Small, non-descript silver fish. Females up to c.6 cm, males up to 3.5 cm.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment:


Shallow margins of still or slow-moving waterbodies, lakes, wetlands, ponds, streams.

Impact on environment

Eats zooplankton, eggs and larvae of fish, aquatic and terrestrial macro-invertebrates. Can contribute to poor water clarity, alter nutrient cycling and exacerbate algal blooms.



Check equipment and vessels for freshwater pests, clean everything that has been in contact with the water and dry everything thoroughly.

Find out more:

For more information about gambusia and how to manage them, please contact Auckland Council at