Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Siluriformes
(Catfish) > Mochokidae
(Squeakers or upside-down catfishes)
Etymology: Synodontis: Greek, syn, symphysis = grown together + Greek, odous = teeth (Ref. 45335). More on author: Vaillant.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; benthopelagic. Tropical
Africa: basins of the Nile River and Shabeelle River, and lakes Turkana, Albert, Edward and Kyoga (Ref. 3202, 82238). Also reported from Lower Chari River (Ref. 367) and Benue River (map in Ref. 57223), but this needs confirmation (Ref. 7362, 57223).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 34.2 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 57223)
Morphology | Morphometrics
soft rays: 13. Diagnosis: gill slits not extending ventrally beyond pectoral-fin insertions; interorbital space over 50% of head width; post-orbital length at least 60% of snout length; maxillary barbels longer than head, unbranched, without tubercles and bordered by a short but distinct, dark basal membrane; outer mandibular barbels with rather numerous, simple ramifications, branches of inner mandibular barbels subdivided, thick and tuberculate; mandibular teeth rather short, numbering 36-48; denticulations of pectoral-fin spines strong on inner, and hardly visible on outer margin; dorsal-fin spine smooth anteriorly, except for some apical denticles; first branched ray of dorsal and pectoral fins prolonged into a filament; adipose fin high and long, distincly separated from rayed dorsal fin; humeral process deep, pointed and granulose, not keeled ventrally; body covered with very small black specks; caudal fin without spots or dots (Ref. 57223).
Coloration: uniformly brownish, with numerous very small black spots, also on adipose fin, but none on other fins (Ref. 57223).
Found in deep, open waters and shallow inshore areas of Lake Albert (Ref. 49805). Occurs in lakes and channels; feeds on algae, macrophytes, detritus, crustaceans, insects and mollusks; breeding takes place during flooding in June to early dry down in January (Ref. 28714). Oviparous (Ref. 205).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous (Ref. 205). Distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).
Paugy, D. and T.R. Roberts, 2003. Mochokidae. p. 195-268 In C. Lévêque, D. Paugy and G.G. Teugels (eds.) Faune des poissons d'eaux douce et saumâtres de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, Tome 2. Coll. Faune et Flore tropicales 40. Musée Royal de l'Afrique Centrale, Tervuren, Belgique, Museum National d'Histoire Naturalle, Paris, France and Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, Paris, France. 815 p. (Ref. 57223)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
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 (0.00610 - 0.03124), b=2.95 (2.77 - 3.13), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.8 ±0.33 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (29 of 100) .