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: Boulenger.
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; benthopelagic; pH range: 6.0 - 7.5; dH range: 25 - ?. Tropical; 24°C - 28°C (Ref. 2059), preferred ?
Africa: coastal drainages of the Bay of Guinea from Ghana to Gabon (Ref. 82238), including the Pra, Sio, Mono, Niger delta, Kwa Ibo (Ref. 57223), Cross (Ref. 57223, 81251), Wouri, Sanaga (Ref. 81251, 82238), Lobe and Kribi (Ref. 82238). Possibly also in the Nyong (Ref. 81251). Presence in Volta and Comoe basins (Ref. 82238) unconfirmed (Ref. 57223). Presence in Gabon (Ogooue drainage) questionable (Ref. 78218).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 25.8 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 57223)
Morphology | Morphometrics
spines: 0. Diagnosis: gill slits not extending ventrally beyond pectoral-fin insertions; interorbital space less than 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 distinct, black basal membrane; outer mandibular barbels with rather long, numerous, simple and thin ramifications, branches of inner mandibular barbels long, subdivided/dichotomous and moderately thin; mandibular teeth rather long, numbering 21-46 (30 in the lectotype); denticulations of pectoral-fin spines weaker on outer than on inner margin; dorsal-fin spine and almost all of the branched dorsal-fin rays prolonged into short filaments; dorsal fin spine smooth anteriorly; humeral process twice as long as deep, pointed and granulose, not keeled ventrally; adipose fin little developed and low, distinctly separated from rayed dorsal fin; body covered with spots of about 1 mm in diameter; caudal fin spotted (Ref. 57223).
Coloration: rather dark, with numerous small spots on dorsal region; all fins, including adipose, marked with non-aligned, small, black spots (Ref. 57223).
Its electric organ is located dorsally and consists of modified striated muscle (Ref. 10011). Oviparous (Ref. 205). Maximum TL recorded was 37.5 cm (Ref. 57223).
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. 109396)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: ; 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=0.00617 (0.00255 - 0.01493), b=3.09 (2.88 - 3.30), based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.9 ±0.3 se; Based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (33 of 100) .