Diet of the Snail Bullhead (Ameiurus brunneus) in the Lower Ogeechee River

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The Snail Bullhead (Ameiurus brunneus) is a small ictalurid species with a maximum length of 243 mm SL. Little is published about its biology; however, it is known that adults are nocturnal and omnivorous. The goal of this study was to examine the diet of snail bullheads as adults. The only two studies, to our knowledge, to describe diet are by McLane in 1955 and Jordan and Brayton in 1878. They are reported to feed on larval trichopterans, chironomids, snails and small fish. Forty specimens were collected from the Lower Ogeechee River Basin during the summer and fall of 2016 by boat electrofishing. Fish were sacrificed, stomachs removed and prey items were identified to the lowest practical taxonomic unit (usually family). The most numerous prey items consumed were Viviparidae snails followed by crayfish, Chironominae, Tanypodinae and fish (Cyprinidae or un-identifiable fish remains). Plant material was found in nearly (~80%) every stomach, however many of those stomachs had caddisflies as well so some of the material could have been from caddisfly cases. This study adds more information about the diet of this relatively understudied species.


Georgia Chapter of the American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting (GA-AFS)


Statesboro, GA