Re: NANFA-- Madtom myth put to rest

Christopher Scharpf (
Fri, 04 May 2001 12:04:24 -0400

>I had always thought that all madtoms were bottom dwellers. NOT SO!


>ALL of the madtoms found niches in a large piece of FLOATING driftwood.

>The second collection went into an outdoor 20 gallon tank, with
>submerged plants and debris, and you guessed it, a piece of
>floating driftwood. Again all of them chose to make their home on
>the driftwood.
>So much for the bottom dweller assumption.

I'm not sure what this demonstrates except for the fact that your madtoms prefer
driftwood. As far as the madtom is concerned, it's not choosing surface over
bottom. It just likes the driftwood to cozy up in. Sink the driftwood and see if
the madtoms find it there.

BTW, I have a large (~8") stonecat (Noturus flavus) that feeds regularly from
the surface. It rests under a piece of slate, but as soon as freeze-dried krill
hits the surface, the cat comes out and prowly the surface until it finds the
tasty morsel. This is not how stonecats feeds in the wild (floating items would
quickly drift downstream). It's just the fish's conditioning to life in a
10-gallon glass box.

Chris Scharpf

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