• Family: Ictaluridae (North American catfishes)
• Other Names: Madtom, beetle-eye
• Ohio Status: No special status
• Adult Size: Typically 4-8 inches, can reach 12 inches.
• Typical Foods: Insect larvae, crayfish and other crustaceans, and small fish.
The stonecat madtom can be various shades of brown in color with a lighter white or cream colored belly. Their adipose fin is attached to their tail with no free rear edge. Their fins are lighter colored than the body and they sometimes have two or three lighter brown or almost yellow saddle like markings over their back. The edges of their fins are often outlined with lighter brown, yellow, or white. They have a long slender body and the upper jaw protrudes beyond the lower jaw. The rear edge of their pectoral spines is straight not deeply serrated.
Habitat and Habits
Stonecat madtoms are primarily a riffle dwelling species. They are most abundant in medium to large rivers in areas with moderately fast current and large boulders and slabs. They have also been found in Lake Erie around the islands and reefs of the western basin and along rocky shorelines. They spend the day hiding under large flat rocks and come out at night to feed. This species is found through out Ohio and is the most common of Ohio's six species of madtoms.
Reproduction and Care of the Young
Stonecat madtoms begin spawning when water temperatures reach about 80oF. The female lays a gelatinous round mass containing about 500 eggs on the underside of flat stones. One of the parents guards the eggs until hatching. Young stonecats are often found in shallower and swifter water than the larger adults.