Common Name

Scientific Name

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Photo by Tom Pettengill
Photo Copyright Tom Pettengill

The channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus, is a popular sport fish that is currently found in many of Utah's warmer waters, such as Utah Lake, but is not native to the state. The channel catfish is native to many areas of North America east of the Rocky Mountains.

Channel catfish eat many types of foods, including plant matter, detritus, and a large variety of invertebrates, although adult fish are primarily piscivorous (they eat fish). The species spawns in late spring and summer, with eggs hatching in about one week. Eggs are guarded by the males, who also guard young fish after hatching.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Sigler, W. F. and J. W. Sigler. 1996. Fishes of Utah[:] a natural history. University of Utah Press. Salt Lake City. 375 pp.