Smallmouth Catfish, Cinetodus froggatti (Ramsay & Ogilby 1886)

Other Names: Froggatt's Catfish, Small-mouthed Catfish, Small-mouthed Salmon Catfish

Smallmouth Catfish, Cinetodus froggatti. Source: Dave Wilson. License: All rights reserved

A large dark bluish-grey to blackish catfish with a pale underside.

Cite this page as:
Martin F. Gomon, Cinetodus froggatti in Fishes of Australia, accessed 27 May 2024,

Smallmouth Catfish, Cinetodus froggatti (Ramsay & Ogilby 1886)

More Info


Roper River, NT; tropical; inhabiting slow-flowing, often turbid rivers.


Dorsal fin I, 7; Anal fin 17-19; Pectoral fin I, 10-11.

Body elongate, robust, elevated at level of dorsal fin; pre-dorsal profile steep head conical to rounded, depressed with a strong dorsal bony plate (head shield); head shield finely striated; supraoccipital process very broad; snout blunt; mouth small, 27-31% HL; gill rakers on first arch 12-17; premaxillary teeth in oblong patches; inner (vomerine) tooth patches absent; outer (palatine) tooth patches oblong and well separated; chin barbel base close together; barbels moderately long, reaching posteriorly to level of base of dorsal-fin spine (about 1/3 SL); gill opening restricted, closing just below level of pectoral fin base; humeral processes well developed, oblong and horizontal; lateral line well developed; front and rear nostrils close together on each side of snout . Scales absent. Adipose fin large (its base equal or more than anal fin base), oblong present above anal fin; fin spines robust; caudal fin strongly forked


To 48 cm TL


Dark blue-grey to blackish overall and creamy below.


Feeds on molluscs (gastropods and bivalves).


Spawn from October to February in the lower reaches of rivers; males incubate eggs in their mouth.

Species Citation

Arius froggatti Ramsay E.P. & Ogilby J.D. (1886) A contribution to the knowledge of the fish fauna of New Guinea. Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W.(2)1(1): 8-20, Strickland River, New Guinea.


Martin F. Gomon

Smallmouth Catfish, Cinetodus froggatti (Ramsay & Ogilby 1886)


Allen 1989

Allen et al 2002

Carpenter & Niem (1999)

Hoese et al Catalogue

Larson & Martin 1989

Marceniuk A.P. & and Menezes N.A. (2007) Systematics of the family Ariidae (Ostariophysi, Siluriformes), with a redefinition of the genera. Zootaxa 1416: 1-126.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37188014

Danger:Venomous spines


Max Size:48 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map