Down arrow Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific Name Pylodictis olivaris  (Rafinesque, 1818)
Common Names Flat Head Catfish
Appaloosa Catfish, Appaluchion, Fladhovedet Dværgmalle (Denmark), Flat Belly Catfish, Goujon, Mississippi Catfish, Mud Catfish, North American Flathead Catfish, Tabby Catfish, Yellow Catfish
Type Locality Ohio River, U.S.A.
Synonym(s) Silurus olivaris
Pronunciation pie low dik tuss - olive ARR iss
Etymology Pylodictis: From the Greek, pelos, meaning mud, and ichthys, meaning fish; in reference to the habit. The specific epithet, olivaris, means olive coloured.
Down arrow Species Information
Size 1550mm or 61" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
Identification Unique looking among North American catfish, the hands down ugliest one. The current rod and reel record from Elk City Reservoir in Kansas stands at 123 pounds. Commercial fishermen have recorded flatheads at five feet long and 140 pounds.
Sexing Unknown
Down arrow Habitat Information
Distribution North America: lower Great Lakes and Mississippi River basins from western Pennsylvania to White-Little Missouri River system in North Dakota, and south to Louisiana in the USA; Gulf Slope from Mobile Bay drainage in Georgia and Alabama, USA to Mexico. Transplanted elsewhere in USA.
North American Atlantic Drainages, Great Lakes, Lake Michigan (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Gulf Coast Drainages, Mississippi (click on these areas to find other species found there)
North American Atlantic Drainages, Great Lakes, Lake Erie (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Gulf Coast Drainages (click on these areas to find other species found there)
North American Atlantic Drainages, Great Lakes, Saint Clair, Thames (click on these areas to find other species found there)

Log in to view data on a map.
IUCN Red List Category Least Concern, range map and more is available on the IUCN species page. Last assessed 2012.
pH 6.0 - 7.6
Temperature 10.0-23.0°C or 50-73.4°F (Show species within this range)
Other Parameters Prefers large deep rivers. It also tolerates turbidity well. At night, it moves into shallows to feed. They rest in deep pools during the day under logs and cut banks. This fish prefers hard sand and gravel substrates.
Down arrow Husbandry Information
Feeding Crayfish, clams, and especially other fishes.
Furniture Not a fish for the home aquarium.
Compatibility Anything it can not swallow. This is North America's fourth largest fish after the blue catfish.
Breeding A saucer-shaped depression is excavated and thousands of eggs are laid in a yellow mass. The males guards and fans the eggs.
Breeding Reports There is no breeding report.
Down arrow Further Information
Reference American Monthly Magazine and Critical Review v. 3 (no. 5) (art. 3) (Sept.), pp 355.
Registered Keepers Keeping this species? Why not .
There are 14 registered keepers, view all "my cats" data.
Wishlists Love this species? Click the heart to add it to your wish list.
There is no wish to keep this species.
Spotters Spotted this species somewhere? Click the binoculars!
There are 3 records of this fish being seen, view them all.
Forum BBCode
More on Pylodictis olivaris
Look up AquaticRepublic.com Look up Pylodictis olivaris on AquaticRepublic.com
Look up on Fishbase Look up Pylodictis olivaris on Fishbase
Look up on Encyclopedia of Life Look up Pylodictis olivaris on Encyclopedia of Life
Look up on Global Biodiversity Information Facility Look up Pylodictis olivaris on Global Biodiversity Information Facility
 QR code LFS label creator.
Last Update 2020 Oct 08 12:05 (species record created: 2001 Apr 25 00:00)