Family: Amiidae

Common Family: The Bowfin Family

Common Name: Bowfin

Scientific Name: Amia calva


The bowfin is a distinct fish of Indiana due to its long dorsal fin. Bowfin also exhibit a bony plate on the underside of the lower jaw. A pair of barbels are located near the nostrils. Males have an eyespot at the base of the caudal fin, females may show an eyespot.

Range and Habitat:

They prefer waters with high amounts of vegetation and low turbidity.

Fishing Facts:

Many people fishing for black bass may catch a bowfin unintentionally. They are very active predators and will eat fish, amphibians, and small rodents.

Similar Species: 

May superficially look like a black bass. No other fish has a large triangular plate on the underside of the lower jaw.