natalis (Lesueur, 1819)
contributors to this species:
Division of Natural Areas and Preserves (1)
||Lives in pools, backwaters,
and sluggish current over soft substrate in creeks and small to
large rivers; oxbows, ponds, and impoundments. This species is
a good sport and food fish and is active at night searching out
food along the bottom by relying on its barbels and sense of smell.
The 'Yellow Bullhead' closely resembles the 'Black Bullhead' A.melas,
but the difference's are that A. natalis has a brown
to yellow colour on top with a yellowish underbelly while A.melas
has a somewhat darker colour on top and a white belly and seems
to have a somewhat more deeper body than the 'Yellow Bullhead'.
The main criteria are the colour of the barbels on these two species.
A. melas has black to dusky barbels while A. natalis
has the two pair of mandibular barbels on the bottom of its chin,
white/yellow, and the rest black. Aquarium Care:
As an aquarium fish it would of course have to be housed in a
somewhat large tank with good external filtration, without a heater,
as this fish is deemed a coldwater cat and as such has a wide
temperature range. Companions in this tank would be very hard
to substantiate as any other fish would be viewed as lunch!. Diet:
In the aquarium adults will eat just about everything, pellet
food, tablet food, frozen bloodworm, earthworms, shrimps and prawns.
In the wild they feed on minnows, snails, shrimp, crayfish and
North America: Atlantic
and Gulf slope drainages from New York to northern Mexico, and
St. Lawrence-Great Lakes and Mississippi river basins from southern
Quebec west to central North Dakota, and south to the Gulf.
no. 43. Jan.2000.
Knopf, The Audubon Society Field guide to North
America Fishes, Whales & Dolphins, 1986.