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: Valenciennes.
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; benthopelagic; pH range: 6.0 - 7.5; dH range: 4 - 15; potamodromous (Ref. 51243). Tropical; 21°C - 26°C (Ref. 2060), preferred ?
Africa: Senegal, Gambia, Casamance, Géba, Volta, Niger (including the Benue) and Chad basins (Ref. 57223). Also in the Sio and Mono in Togo, Lake Nokoué (Ouémé basin) in Benin, and Kwa Ibo and Cross in Nigeria (Ref. 57223). Present in the Nile basin (Ref. 7362). Reported from the Bohou River (AMNH 228566)(Ubangi River system, middle Congo River basin)(Ref. 41414). Report from the Kolenté (=Great Scarcies)(Ref. 3202) unconfirmed in Ref. 57223.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 33.5 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 57961)
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 few short, spike-like ramifications, branches of inner mandibular barbels globose and bearing 2-3 tubercles; mandibular teeth thin and small, numbering 25-38; denticulations on outer margins of pectoral-fin spines relatively well developed on outer margin, but weaker than those on inner margin; dorsal-fin spine smooth anteriorly, except for a few apical denticles; humeral process triangular, rather deep, and keeled ventrally; adipose fin short and distinctly separated from rayed dorsal fin; body covered with spots of about 1 mm in diameter; caudal fin spotted (Ref. 57223).
Coloration: brownish, somewhat paler on belly; type not well preserved, but still has some black spots on adipose fin, possibly suggesting an also spotted body; other specimens have in fact body and head covered with spots; fins also spotted, the spots on caudal fin aligned; maxillary barbels and their basal membranes black (Ref. 57223).
Maximum TL was recorded at 22.0 cm (Ref. 57223). 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. 109396)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
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=0.01047 (0.00549 - 0.01997), b=2.89 (2.73 - 3.05), based on LWR estimates for this Genus-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 (30 of 100) .