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Swampfish, Chologaster cornuta

Physical Description: 
  • Tiny eyes
  • No pelvic fins
  • Elongate body, round anteriorly and compressed posteriorly
  • Depressed head
  • Supraterminal mouth with a fleshy lower lip that occludes the upper lip
  • Papillae on head, body, and caudal fin
  • Cycloid scales are tiny and embedded
  • No gill rakers
  • Male snout tip with a Y-shaped fleshy appendage; female snout tip with two fleshy bumps
  • Short, rounded dorsal fin
  • Spatulate caudal fin
  • Brown back, black stripes, orange or yellow cast on the head
  • Similar species:
  • Springfish (Chologaster agassizi)
  • Mean body size:
  • Adults are 25-50 mm standard length
  • Habitat:
  • Lowland swampy rivers, ponds, and lakes that are acidic and bog-like
  • Distribution in VA:
  • Chowan, Chickahominy systems in the James drainage, and Dismal Swamp
  • Food Habits:
  • Midge larvae, amphipods, cladocerans
  • Feed at night
  • Reproductive Habits:
  • Usually die after spawning
  • Spawning occurs in early March through mid-April at 13-19°C
  • Fecundity is 339-426 eggs.
  • Maybe branchial brooding, but no evidence of this
  • Population Status, Economic, or Ecological Importance:
  • Aquarium fish
References: Jenkins, R.E and N.M. Burkhead. 1993. Freshwater Fishes of Virginia. American Fisheries Society, Bethesda, Maryland.

Continue Browsing Families.....
  1. Petromyzontidae, Lampreys
  2. Polyodontidae, Paddlefish
  3. Acipenseridae, Sturgeons
  4. Lepisosteidae, Gars
  5. Amiidae, Bowfins
  6. Anguillidae, Freshwater Eels
  7. Amblyopsidae, Cavefishes
  8. Ictaluridae, Catfish
  9. Percopsidae, Trout-Perches
  10. Salmonidae, Trouts
  11. Clupeidae, Herrings
  12. Esocidae, Pikes
  13. Aphredoderidae, Pirate Perches
  14. Umbridae, Mudminnows
  15. Fundulidae, Killifishes
  16. Poeciliidae, Livebearers
  17. Cyprinidae, Minnows
  18. Catostomidae, Suckers
  19. Gasterosteidae, Sticklebacks
  20. Atherinidae, Silversides
  21. Cottidae, Sculpins
  22. Sciaenidae, Drums
  23. Percidae, Perches
  24. Moronidae, Striped Basses
  25. Centrarchidae, Sunfishes

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