Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) libraries are important tools for genomic research. We have constructed seven genomic BAC libraries from three fish species, rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), carp (Cyprinus carpio) and tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus). The two rainbow trout BAC libraries have average insert sizes of 58 and 110 kb. The average size of inserts in the carp BAC library is 160 kb. The average insert sizes of the four tilapia BAC libraries are 65, 105, 145 and 194 kb, respectively. These libraries represent good coverage of each genome (2-64 x coverage). The libraries can be screened by conventional colony hybridization and provide a starting point for the construction of high-density filtres or polymerase chain reaction (PCR) screening approaches. These BAC libraries will facilitate the positional cloning of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for a variety of economically important traits in these species.