Etheostoma acuticeps

Ethesotoma acuticeps
Sharphead Darter – Ethesotoma acuticeps

Ethesotoma acuticeps

FamilyScientific NameAuthorYearCommon Name
PercidaeEtheostoma acuticepsBailey1959Sharphead Darter

Unique Characteristics:  Belly and interpelvic area lacking modified scales. Lateral line normal, not arched upward. 1st anal spine stiff, as thick as 2nd spine. Sides with horizontal streaks along each scale row. Compressed body. Extremely pointed snout. 11-15 narrow dusky bars on the side. Male is olive to blue with turquoise fins. Black spot at front of first dorsal fin. Female yellow-brown with no spots on fins. Opercle naked. Soft dorsal, caudal, and anal fin margins not black, light submarginal band absent;  fins not spotted with black; no red spots on body or fins. Restricted to Nolichucky basin.

Similar Species:

Greenfin Darter Etheostoma chlorobranchium. Belly and interpelvic area lacking modified scales. Lateral line normal, not arched upward. 1st anal spine stiff, as thick as 2nd spine. Sides with horizontal streaks along each scale row. Opercle scaled dorsally. Cheek with 0-1 dark dashes or spots, subocular bar absent or weak. Basicaudal region with no cream-colored blotches in the shape of an hourglass. Snout rounded; upper lip protrudes but little beyond snout. Cheeks unscaled. Adults with light submarginal band on anal, caudal, or soft dorsal fins; black margin usually with thin light edge; no red spots on sides; no red spot at tip of 1st interradial membrane of spinous dorsal fin or on caudal fin base. Large male is deep green with green fins; female is brown with blue breast.

Etheostoma chlorobranchium
Greenfin darter – Etheostoma chlorobranchium

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