Photo by B. H. Bauer
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Noturus baileyi Taylor 1969
Identification: The Smoky Madtom has a slender body and a flat head, with the deepest point being beneath the dorsal fin. The body is olive-brown on the back and sides and white to yellow below. There are 4 pale yellow saddles along the middle of the back, barely visible laterally. The fins are clear or yellow to dusky brown. The mostly clear or yellow adipose fin has a dusky band that almost extends to the edge. The pectoral spine is short with 4-5 large teeth on the rear edge and small teeth on the front edge. The caudal fin has a straight edge and is joined to the adipose fin with a shallow notch between the two fins. The anal fin has 12-14 rays. To 2 ¾ in. (7.3 cm) total length.
Range: The Smoky Madtom is found in Citico Creek (Little Tennessee River system) in Monroe County, Tennessee. A population in Abrams Creek, Blount County, Tennessee, is thought to have been extirpated. The Smoky Madtom is rare and protected as an endangered species.
Habitat: The Smoky Madtom inhabits clear, cool, rocky riffles, runs, and flowing pools of creeks.
Similar species: The Least Madtom, Noturus hildebrandi, has a clear adipose fin without a dusky band and a white lower side. The Pygmy Madtom, Noturus stanauli, has a white-tipped snout, a white lower side, and 14-17 anal rays.