Cat-eLog Right Arrow Mochokidae Right Arrow Mochokinae Right Arrow Synodontis

Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific Name Synodontis acanthoperca  Friel & Vigliotta, 2006
Common Name Scissortail Syno
Type Locality Gabon, Haut-Ogôoué Province, Ogôoué River at and below the Rapids of Massoukou (Masuku), 1°39’30”S 13°32’14”E
Pronunciation sin oh don tiss
Etymology Synodontis: From the Greek syn, meaning together, and odontos, meaning tooth; in reference to the closely-spaced lower jaw teeth. The specific name is a Latinized combination of the Greek acantha, meaning a thorn and the Latin opercul, meaning a cover or lid, alluding to the distinctive opercular spines developed by mature males in this species.
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 46mm or 1.8" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
Identification All species in the genus Synodontis have a hardened head cap that has attached a process (humeral process) which is situated behind the gill opening and pointed towards the posterior. The dorsal fin and pectoral fins have a hardened first ray which is serrated. Caudal fin is always forked. There is one pair of maxillary barbels, sometimes having membranes and occasionally branched. The two pairs of mandibular barbels are often branched and can have nodes attached. The cone-shaped teeth in the upper jaw are short. S-shaped and movable in the lower jaw. These fish produce audible sounds when disturbed rubbing the base of the pectoral spine against the pectoral girdle.

Synodontis acanthoperca is a relatively small species that can be distinguished from all congeners except Synodontis punu by a distinctive pigmentation pattern that includes a pair of dark patches on the caudal fin. One patch is present in the middle of each lobe of the fin. Furthermore, this species and also Synodontis punu are distinguished by the presence of a well developed opercular spine in sexually mature males. In all other mochokid species the opercle lacks such well-developed ornamentation and sexual dimorphism of the opercle is unknown.
Sexing According to the original description, males have well developed opercular spines.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
Distribution From original description:
This species is known from two sites within the Ogôoué River basin of Gabon. The type locality is the Rapids of Massoukou (Masuku) on the Ogôoué River near Franceville and a second population has been collected in rapids on the Louétsi River near Bongolo (Fig. 4). Given the significant river distance between these sites (> 500 km), we speculate that S. acanthoperca is widely distributed in the upper Ogôoué basin wherever similar rapid habitats exist.
African Waters, Gabon Waters, Ogowe (click on these areas to find other species found there)
IUCN Red List Status Data Deficient
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
Breeding Unreported.
Breeding Reports There is no breeding report.
Jump to next section Further Information
References Zootaxa 1125: 45–56 (2006)
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Last Update 2011 May 18 06:50 (species record created: 2009 Jan 01 12:21)