Channa melasoma (Bleeker, 1851)
Black snakehead
photo by FAO

Family:  Channidae (Snakeheads)
Max. size:  30 cm SL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  benthopelagic; freshwater
Distribution:  Asia: Mekong in Thailand to Indonesia and the Philippines.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 0-0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 37-41; Anal spines: 0-0; Anal soft rays: 21-25. Preserved color dark greenish or bluish dorsally, yellowish or reddish brown ventrally; an inconspicuous spot behind corner of mouth; yellow spots on underside of depressed head occasionally. Pectorals about as long as head behind eyes. Large scales on top of head. Dorsal fin extends beyond tip of anal. Young specimens have a red lateral band from snout to caudal.
Biology:  Inhabits medium to large rivers (Ref. 12975). Occurs in shaded forest streams with sluggish, acidic water and submerged roots/leaf litter substrates. Appears to be mainly nocturnal and feeds on small animals (Ref. 85309). Preys on fish (Ref. 12693).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 03 January 2020 Ref. (123251)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 06.03.92
Modified by: Reyes, Rodolfo B. - 27.02.14
Checked by: Torres, Armi G. - 13.08.01

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.

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