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Any of several silvery food fishes (family Salmonidae, or Coregonidae), inhabiting cold northern lakes of Europe, Asia, and North America. Whitefish weigh about 2–5 lbs (1–2 kg); they eat insect larvae and other small animals. The Lake Superior whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis), also called whiting or shad, is the largest of the lake whitefishes. Ciscoes, or lake herring (Coregonus artedi), are herringlike food and sport fishes. The best sport fishes of the family are the Rocky Mountain whitefish (Prosopium williamsoni) and other round whitefishes.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on whitefish, visit Britannica.com.