bigmouth buffalo fish
Bigmouth Buffalo | credit: USFWS

The bigmouth buffalo is the largest of three buffalo fish and the largest North American member of the sucker family of fishes. These gentle giants are found in Hudson Bay, Great Lakes, and the Mississippi Basin. The species has been introduced elsewhere in the USA.

Known to live to 110 years or more, the species is one of the longest-lived and latest-maturing freshwater fishes.

Bigmouth buffalo are similar in appearance to smallmouth buffalo, black buffalo, common carp, and freshwater drum. The bigmouth buffalo can be distinguished from similar species by its mouth which opens forward, greenish coloration, and lack of barbells or spines.

Bigmouth buffalo prefer shallow areas with vegetation. They feed on plankton and generally do not respond to baits or lures.

Bigmouth buffalo are in decline in North America. Although long-lived, adults reproduce infrequently.

Related Information

Fish Species