Fathead Minnow is a generalist and inhabits streams and lakes without regard to elevation, size or natural community. Because it is a popular baitfish, it continues to be released and become established in new areas. It is native to the Saint Lawrence and Allegheny drainages and is a nonnative inhabitant to all Atlantic slope drainages except Newark Bay. It inhabits 17 of the 18 watersheds. Records indicate that it is a recent arrival on Long Island, where is remains relatively rare.