Iowa DNR
River & Stream Biological Monitoring
Fish and Benthic Macroinvertebrate Surveys
Physical Habitat Assessments

Shorthead Redhorse Moxostoma macrolepidotum

Catostomidae (Suckers)
Trophic Class
Benthic Invertivore
Is Exotic to Iowa?
Is Lithophilous Spawner?
Is Hybrid?
State Listing Status
Not Listed
Assessment Program Statistics

This species was found at 290 bioassessment sites, 2 rapid fish bioassessment sites, 76 fisheries assessment sites, and 12 fisheries presence-only assessment sites. In total, it was collected at 377 distinct sites, or 27.9% of the 1350 total sites monitored by the bioassessment program. It is the 19th most commonly collected species.

The Shorthead Redhorse was collected in 575 bioassessment sampling sessions and 164 fisheries assessment sessions. It was present in 2 rapid bioassessment sessions and 12 presence-only sessions.

The biological assessment program has collected a total of 19,996 individual Shorthead Redhorse specimens, ranking it the #20 most collected fish.

Species Characteristics

A slender, coarse-scaled sucker with a bright red tail fin. Its head is shorter than other redhorse, its dorsal fin is strongly curved inward, with 12-13 or sometimes 14 soft rays. The upper lip often has a "pea-shaped" swelling in the middle. The rear margin of the lower lip is nearly straight with the lip folds divided into prominent papillae. The pharyngeal teeth are thin, comb-like with about 53 per arch. The lateral line is complete with 41 to 45 scales. Scale count around the caudal peduncle is 12.

Species Distribution Maps

HUC12 watersheds where this species has been found