Fathead minnows are native to the Nearctic region. The northern limits of their geographic ranges extends from Quebec to Alberta and Northwest Territories, Canada. Their southern limites of their geographic range extends as far southward as Alabama, Texas, and New Mexico. Fathead minnows are most abundant in the Prairie Pothole Region of the northern Great Plains. Bait-bucket introductions have also occurred in the Mobile Bay drainage, Colorado River drainage, Alabama, Arizona, New Mexico, and Mexico. They are generally absent in mountainous regions as well as on the Atlantic Slope of Delaware River. They have also been introduced in Europe (Belgium, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom), Puerto Rico, and Iran.
Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Introduced , Native ); palearctic (Introduced )