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Colorful Fundulus, Louisiana

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#1 eamoncorbett

  • NANFA Guest
  • Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Posted 10 June 2019 - 05:19 PM

I found this little fish in late April in Kincaid Reservoir, Kisatchie NF, just west of the Red River in Central Louisiana. I'm a newcomer to fish ID but seems to me like it has to be a Fundulus, and based on location and lack of a black stripe it seems like the options are Golden Topminnow (F. chrysotus) and the Western Starhead Topminnow (F. blairae). But I can't find any pictures of either that show the large showy blue-ish fins both above and below-- it actually looks more like one of the studfish (like F. catenatus), which don't seem like they should be there-- but I guess could've been introduced. What you think? There's a second individual in the bottom left corner that is presumably the same species. 


I've also attached a second photo of another Fundulus at the same site, but that one looks quite different to my eye, and more like one of the expected species.


The site is at the edge of a large reservoir, with some aquatic vegetation, and baby bowfin, baby pickerel, largemouth bass, and sunfish were also present. 


Thank you for your help!

Attached Files

Edited by eamoncorbett, 10 June 2019 - 05:19 PM.

#2 Doug_Dame

  • NANFA Member

Posted 10 June 2019 - 08:58 PM

Based on the black fringe on the tail (which per other photos and drawings probably isn't quite at the end of the tail), and the huge anal and dorsal fins, it's gotta be catenatus. Neither blairae nor chrysotus have finnage anything like that, at least that I've ever seen. Per Petersons FG, there is a documented range for catenatus in west MS in the Mississippi, Pearl and Lake Pontchartrain drainages. USGS-NIS also has a few Louisiana records from St Helena and East Feliciana parishes, but I think those are a bit more to the east.


So probably the SW (state of Mississippi)/Mississippi River population, either oddball stragglers or expanding their range. Bait-bucket releases also possible, of course.


Just my guess. 


Would it be asking too much for you to go back and catch some, for positive confirmation ?!?!? :) I'd go with you, if I could. But you're out of weekend range for me, sadly.

Doug Dame

Floridian now back in Florida

#3 mattknepley

  • NANFA Member
  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 11 June 2019 - 04:11 PM

I'd second Doug.  I'm no expert, but that caudal fin looks like a studfish to me, and I can't make the other fins fit Golden or Starhead.


That blue in the fins is cool.  Funny how you only see it from above.  other fish do it too, some Cyprinella come to mind.


Kudos for going the extra mile and getting a good photo without snagging a fish you didn't know.  You'd probablly have been fine to do so, as long as you didn't take it home, but this works really well.

Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

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