Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Siluriformes
(Catfish) > Mochokidae
(Squeakers or upside-down catfishes)
Etymology: Synodontis: Greek, syn, symphysis = grown together + Greek, odous = teeth (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; benthopelagic; pH range: 6.2 - 7.5; dH range: ? - 15. Tropical; 22°C - 26°C (Ref. 1672); 17°N - 4°N
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 30.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 31256)
spines: 0. Diagnosis: gill slits not extending ventrally beyond pectoral-fin insertions; eye large, its diameter 23-34.5% of head length and 48-75% of snout length; post-orbital length at least 60% of snout length; maxillary barbels unbranched, longer than head, without tubercles and bordered by a rather broad basal membrane restricted to their anterior thirds; outer mandibular barbels with simple, thin and rather long ramifications; branches of inner mandibular barbels shorter, subdivided and tuberculate; mandibular teeth slender and moderately long, numbering 39-62 (62 in the holotype); denticulations of pectoral-fin spines weak on outer margin and well developed on inner margin; dorsal-fin spine smooth anteriorly, except for a few apical denticles; humeral process triangular and not keeled ventrally; adipose fin well developed and rather close to rayed dorsal fin; branched dorsal-fin rays as well as dorsal- and pectoral-fin spines prolonged into filaments; spots present on body and fins (Ref. 57223).
Coloration: body more or less dark brown. Back, sides, head and fins with few isolated small spots; depending on individuals, spots on fins more or less aligned in series; maxillary barbels (including membranes) black; fin filaments darker than fins themselves (Ref. 57223).
Africa: White Nile (Ref. 3202), Niger, Volta, Chad, Kwa Ibo (Ref. 57223) and Cross basins (Ref. 52861).
Maximum TL was recorded at 22.2 cm, max. SL at 22.2 cm (Ref. 57223). Occurs over a muddy bottom but may also be found over rocks. Feeds mainly on insect larvae but will also take algae (Ref. 6868). This is also an upside-down species (Ref. 4537). Oviparous (Ref. 205).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous (Ref. 205). Distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).
Gosse, J.-P., 1986. Mochokidae. p. 105-152. In J. Daget, J.-P. Gosse and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde (eds.) Check-list of the freshwater fishes of Africa (CLOFFA). ISNB, Brussels, MRAC, Tervuren; and ORSTOM, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 3202)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: of no interest; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01380 (0.00615 - 0.03096), b=2.95 (2.77 - 3.13), based on LWR estimates for this Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.7 ±0.28 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (34 of 100) .